Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Mobile Authenticator

I have talked before about my purchase of the Blizzard Authenticator key fob. I’ve had it since July ‘08 and have had no regrets at all with this purchase. It has never caused any problems and has never been considered a bother. It’s an extra 10 seconds to login and the added warm fuzzy feeling that my account is just that much harder to hack. After seeing guildmates being hacked left and right, I felt very much like a smart cookie for the little $7 purchase.

For those of you with fancy-schmancy phones like my iPhone, there is now an app available that does the exact same thing as my key fob. See the FAQs for more detailed information. The best part of all this is that this application is FREE. Yup, it doesn’t cost anything! And I thought $7 was a good deal!

You are required to convert your WoW account into a Battle.net account which really was super simple. Only difference? Now I login to WoW with my email address & password instead of my account username. You can add multiple accounts to your Battle.net profile as well so all your logins are now the same. I have an old deactivated WoW account that I was able to add to my profile as easily as the active account.

To use the application authenticator I had to first remove the key fob connection. They made it simple. I just had to enter two codes from the authenticator in a row and it was removed. I was then able to add the application authenticator using the serial number of the application, which comes up the first time you open the application or can be found anytime in the Setup menu.

What are the only differences I find between the key fob and app authenticators? The key fob had 6 digits. The application has 8. My husband was happy with the increased numbers but he’s a security nerd. I was neither excited nor dismayed by this news. Also you can now see when the number is about to change with a little progress bar under the code so you don’t have to worry about adding a code that will expire a second before you hit enter. That I do think is pretty handy.

I set up everything last night before going to bed. I didn’t want to start my night out whining if it broke something. It went smoothly with absolutely no problems. I actually already had a battle.net account (from when I purchased the key authenticators for my husband and myself) and to that I was able to add my two WoW accounts. I deactivated the key fob and activated the app. I then crossed my fingers and tried to login with the new code. It worked flawlessly.

A sort of neat side note for those who do have two WoW accounts is that before going to my character selection it asked me what account I wanted to login to. I thought it slightly odd since the one account isn’t active. I felt it pretty obvious which I would want to login to. This of course wouldn’t be an issue for those with multiple active accounts and allows you the use of one authenticator for all your accounts (not to mention only one username/password combo to remember).

My husband has his own iPhone and authenticator app as well has his own battle.net account so we won’t be running into any potential account sharing issues. Like if he goes out and I can’t play because he took his phone and the code with him. I guess that means my days of logging him in to take all his gold are over (just kidding!).

I could see it as a possible bonus parenting tool to prevent kids from logging into WoW without mom or dad there to give them the code. Either that or force kids to sneak their parents phones away when they’re not looking.

If you have an iPhone (or I assume an iPod Touch), I recommend this highly. It’s going to be more convenient for me in the long run because I always have my phone near by. I always kept my key fob with my computer but now I really don’t have to worry about the extra device.

You can download it through the iTunes app store. Click the link on this site for a quick way to find it.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Please Help Me Summon Dalaran!

Last night I was the only mage in the raid group and I ended up having a bit of portal fun with my fellow Bananas.

It started out innocently. Someone had just gotten a tier piece and had asked nicely if they could go and turn in the token quickly. I opened a portal for the fellow and Alburet who had just returned to his computer saw me casting a portal and thinking I was trying to create a new food table very helpfully clicked on it and ended up in Dalaran. We all giggled at his silliness and since he was our warlock had to run out to summon him back.

Later, Hold needed repairs and since he was our off-tank we thought it a good idea that he not fight with broken items. To tease Alburet a bit I announce "Please help me summon Dalaran!" as I'm opening the portal.

Aelaan, who had missed Al's earlier disappearing trick, wasn't thinking clearly and also trying to be most helpful came and clicked on my portal and ended up in Dalaran. Poor Aelaan was teased for being so silly. I told him that to be fair the summon worked because he found Dalaran just fine.

At the end of the night Aelaan emoted that he was clicking the portal to summon Dalaran before he went through it. I thought it was funny. I have some goofy people I hang out with!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

I Think the Oracles Love Me!

I sort of don’t care that the puppy people and the googlyblob monsters are fighting each other in Sholazar Basin. I just don’t feel personally involved with their battle. My personal quest to build my reputation with each came from a purely selfish motive.

What I was interested in was the fact that both the Frenzyheart and the Oracles had jewelcrafting patterns that I didn’t know. They only shared these jewelcrafting secrets with those they really really liked.

When I started building my reputation in Sholazar Basin, I first picked the Frenzyheart to work with and gain their trust. This wasn’t by accident.

My reasoning was thus:

Frenzyheart only had a jewelcrafting pattern that I wanted. I didn’t care about the Frenzyheart Insignia of Fury trinket they had or the Frenzyheart Brew you could get from the Ripe Disgusting Jar.

The Oracles on the other hand had a jewelcrafting pattern as well as their cracked eggs that could get me new little pets. I love pets! Yeah, yeah there’s some green proto-drake thing too but who cares about that? I already have a proto-drake that I rarely use.

Seeing how from a rational point of view the jewelcrafting patterns were more useful than the hatched pets I decided the best course of action was to first work with the Frenzyheart. Get what I needed quickly and then switch so I could spend more time focusing on getting the pets I wanted from the Oracles.

The plan was to just get the Frenzyheart to like me well enough to earn the pattern and move on. Keste was quick to point out that doing just a bit more with them granted some recognition. I stuck it out to get the Frenzyheart Tribe & Honorary Frenzyheart achievements. It worked out well as it was this extra bit of time that got me the Frenzyheart Brew.

Pleased with my new pattern and the achievements, I quickly switched camps to working on getting the Oracles to like me. At revered status I was able to purchase my pattern and start nursing eggs that could produce the coveted pets. I have earned Savior of the Oracles achievement but I still have some work to do before I earn the The Oracles achievement. Not much longer though and I’ll be recognized as a Mercenary of Sholazar.

Back to the important part though, the pets! I’ve been revered for about two weeks. Last week my first egg hatched while I was in Naxxramas and to my absolutely delight I found a White Tickbird Hatchling inside. What fabulous luck to get a pet out of my very first egg! A very neat pet as well since the tickbird is able to fly behind me while I’m cruising around on my griffin. He’s turned into a great ore hunting companion.

Last night my second egg was ready to hatch and out slithered a Cobra Hatchling. Unbelievable! I am never this fortunate. Either the Oracles really enjoy my company or I am really good at caring for eggs. I’m not sure which.

I picked up a third egg last night. It is impossible to imagine that perhaps one of the last pets, the Tickbird Hatchling or Proto-Drake Whelp, may be inside. Can the Oracles favor me so much? We will see in approximately 6 more days.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

New Guild

I have found myself a new place to belong. Some great friends have gathered together to start our own small friendly guild. The guild is very small and casual but I think it will fit me very well for now. We decided to stick with the name we were used to calling our little group, Bananas. It may seem silly bit it really is very fitting.

We're not even certain if we will get much raiding in but we will certainly try when we can. I really don't mind as I am finding myself pretty busy anyway. The new more casual atmosphere is definately a weight off my mind.

The best part of the new guild? The guild tabbard is so adorable it makes me giggle each and every time I look at it. We picked a monkey because... duh, monkeys love bananas! It's just the silliest tabbard I've ever seen and I love it!

Giant Rat

Yay for me! After trying ever since arriving in Dalaran and fishing up over a thousand random fish and junk I finally have caught myself a giant rat for my critter collection. It came as a surprise as I was standing around chatting with friends and thought it'd be a good time killer. I got the rat on my second cast and oh my goodness did I squeal with glee!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Business Draenei

I've been Desdarii the loner for a couple days now and last night it hit me. I don't have to save all these gems for guildees anymore... I could *gasp* sell them and become rich! Oh! And I could use my jewelcrafting tokens to buy dragons eyes to sell on the Auction House and make more money instead of collecting them to make guildees stuff. I could create titansteel and just sell it to strangers! I could try making some epics and sell them for hefty Auction House prices instead of handing them over for free.

I wonder how much it costs to rent a little space in Dalaran or perhaps purchase myself a street cart? I could easily tour the major cities in a day with my handy dandy portals.

I have a real opportunity to become fabulously wealthy and buy myself more junk for my bank that I really don't have room for! Now to figure out what I can buy once I make my millions. There's gotta be something I need.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Desdarii the Unguilded

I've taken the step to forge forth without a house or membership to belong to. It was a difficult call but one I believe was necessary given how unhappy I was. I will probably be much more casual a player now and the silence in my chat window is startling.

I haven't cancelled the game yet but that may be upcoming. I wasn't planning on keeping the account active past May anyway once the little one arrived so I'm just preparing early which will give me a chance to get some more things settled for our baby's arrival.

It was fun while it lasted but I really just didn't feel like I was a good fit for the guild anymore. They'll go on and I'll find some new path to wander down.

/farewell Thalanaar

Monday, March 16, 2009

WoW Lull

I’ve grown quite bored and bleh about WoW the last couple weeks. This could be for a couple different reasons.

Seriously Pregnant

I’m 8 months pregnant and realized I have less than 8 weeks to finish all the crap I need to do to prepare for baby! We’ve got birthing classes, registries for the shower, preparing for leaving work, scrubbing the house for the in-law’s visit, selecting a name, etc etc. I need to work on this stuff and let’s not forget that I’m new. I haven’t a clue what I’m doing!


I seriously have no patience for any of it which may be mostly contributed to being increasingly uncomfortable the closer I get to 40 weeks. Seeing any sort of unnecessary nonsense fill my screen makes me want to log out and not return.

It doesn’t matter the degree of drama. I’m irritated by all of it. Someone upset about some serious life altering guild issue is met with the same snarkiness of some whiner complaining that no one said “Hi” to them when they logged in. Not to mention the reoccurring arguments that seem to cycle through the guild every month or so. A month or so ago I may have given my all to trying to help resolve them. Now they’re just tired dried up discussions I’ve had many times and am personally done with.

It’s not limited to the guild either. I tried taking my priest, Goldy, on a PuG run and was booted from the group because of my complaints of the other members. No, I will not take back calling that dwarf a huntard when he was so apparently bad at his class. Nor do I apologize for telling the paladin that just joined our already in progress run that he should join a group ready to go and that I won’t wait for him to eat his dinner first.

Do not come to me with your problems right now unless you want to deal with a buttload of pregger aggro. You’d think about to be a mom I’d be all comforting and helpful. Not this little Draenei. You have been warned.

Feeling like I don’t have much to do when I login

Desdarii first does her jewelcrafting daily. She then checks and refills the vaults with cut gems for guildees. It’s a thankless task but one I’m happy to do so long as people find it useful. Des has been working on getting heroic dungeon achievements when folks are on to help. Des helps clear Naxx each week with her raiding group.

Goldy logs in to disenchant things and work on her tailoring from materials friends have sent her. Apart from that singular PuG attempt this is the extent of her game time.

Aratria farms some herbs and prepares potions for Desdarii’s raiding. She spends the rest of her time standing around in cat form in Dalaraan and /lick-ing random people because I’m strange like that.

Other than that, meh. It sort of feels like rinse, repeat after that honestly.

I don’t think I’m ready to quit the game but maybe I’m just too wrapped up in the real life to do list that I’m not giving WoW a fair piece of my attention. So I apologize that I haven’t been very prolific writing here lately but I haven’t been feeling it. And if I’ve been particularly unsympathetic or even mean to you I apologize*. Blame the hormones.

* Huntards and rude Pally’s do not qualify for said apology.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Our First Malygos Attempt

Last Sunday we were running late and weren't able to complete our clear of Naxxramus like we usually do. We decided to gather on Monday even though it is not a typical raid day for us just to kill Kel'thuzad. Poor Alburet wasn't able to attend due to prior commitments but was a good sport and wished us all luck.

Monday night we did kill Kel'thuzad without any difficulty and so we had ten folks standing around going, "Now what?" We had already done Sartharion and Archavon that week. Our fearless leader said "Umm... To Malygos!" So after everyone discussing where the heck Malygos actually was located and much travel we arrived and gave just a single go at the big scary dragon.

We didn't expect to get far. No one was prepared. It was a spur of the moment thing. As it turned out, we were correct since we didn't even make it through the first phase.

Later little Alburet expressed distress at missing our attempt at Malygos. I understand Al's point. He wants to be there and experience it all with us. I totally get it and am not trying to discredit his feelings. Honestly though, all the shadowy little gnome missed was a very confused group of people running about and then dying quickly.

I thought Keste's (aka Gabi) quick summary version of the night's events was very accurate so I wanted to copy it here.
  • Gabi summons Malygos
  • Gee goes "OH CRAP!" because he realizes Malygos now wants to eat Gabi
  • Gee pulls aggro
  • Gee keeps moving around
  • DPS keeps moving around
  • Everyone goes "WHERE ARE THE FRIGGIN SPARKS??"
  • Everyone goes "WTF, WHY ARE WE IN THE AIR??"
  • We die
  • Everyone goes "We need to go read up on this fight again."
  • Half of us go "Why can't we res?"
  • The other half goes, "Because you're trying to get into the portal to Occulus."
That really explains our first Malygos attempt and reading it makes me giggle. Don't worry Alburet, next time we go in there it will be planned in advance and people will actually have some details on how to stay alive. I'll personally make sure that you are around when we go as well!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Happy Birthday to Me!

Eh, it may be tacky to announce and wish myself a happy birthday but you'll get over it. Today I am 31 years old and I also happen to be 31 weeks pregnant! Strange coincidence!

Happy Birthday Me!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Lich King Heroic Achievements

Yesterday a group of us got together with the sole purpose of trying some of the heroic dungeons harder achievements. We had Gee our Paladin tank, Gabi our Death Knight tank, Stesha for healing juices and Earynn and I rounded out the group with our damaging skills. We worked at this for hours and only acquired four achievements but they weren't simple ones!

We started in Azjol-Nerub. It was the one dungeon none of had any of the achievements for. First on the list was Watch Him Die. This was a little tricky. We had to kill the big ugly bug guy (Krik'thir the Gatewatcher) without killing his Watchers. The skirmishers, warriors and shadowcasters could die, just not the Watchers. This was why we built our group with two tanks.

Our original plan consisted of Gee handling the groups one at a time and killing the smaller adds. Then Gee would keep the Watchers busy while Gabi tanked Krik'thir for us. It didn't work too well. The Watchers were continuously wrapping us in webbing or blinding us making the boss kill impossible.

Plan B was to have Gee just grab all the monsters in the room and run away while Gabi grabbed Krik'thir for us. Again another failure as Gee died too soon for us to finish the boss off but we were very close!

The winning plan was to combine these two ideas. Gee pulled the first two groups one at a time letting us kill the smaller spider things. He then snagged the third group and ran with the 3 Watchers and just 2 adds chasing him. Gabi got Krik'thir's attention and with the help of Earynn's heroism ability we burned him down. We all then promptly died from the returning watch of evil wrapping and blinding Watchers but the achievement was ours!

Next on the list was Hadronox Denied. This one was much more straight forward. We just had to catch the giant spider before it reached the front of the room and webbed the gates closed. Simple right? Well no there were the three Crushers in the way as well as the endless stream of little bug creatures.

Our first attempt we were very nervous about Hadronox getting up front before we were able to catch him. We had Gee grab the first and second Crusher and when dead start moving with the third crusher towards where Hadronox would be arriving to at. This didn't prove to work so well. With the crusher plus the tons of little bug creatures it wasn't long before we were all smashed into paste. We did realize that Hadronox is not rushing to the front so we abandoned this plan.
Second attempt was to kill all the Crushers in turn and then position Gee to take care of Hadronox and Gabi was tossing his Death and Decay to distract all the little spiders. Again everyone started to go squish but we had the fire power to finish off Hadronox before we all went down. Achievement received ... and then we all died from the adds. It seems to be a trend with us.

Last in Azjol-Nerub was Gotta Go! Pretty straight forward. Kill Anub'arak within 4 minutes. The achievement in game says 2 minutes. This has been upped to 4 minutes in 3.0.8 but the text in the game hasn't been corrected.

The trick to this one is how quickly you can kill the adds when Anub'arak burrows so he will come back up quicker. Luckily high damage happens to be a specialty of me and my friends. We got this achievement on our first try and didn't even die!


With Azjol-Nerub completed we decided that our group's set up was also ideal for Moorabi in Gundrak with the number of interrupts and silences we had. Basically everyone but Stesha had a way to stop the Mammoth transformation. We ran out to Gundrak to try for Less-Rabi.

We spent two hours alone attempting this achievement. This one is no joke. It is not just skill but a good smattering of luck to get this done. Good thing is that he's very easy to run from if he does transform so you can reset and try him again. We had a death every now and then but for the most part we were just able to rush out and try again. I can't tell you how many resets we had attempting this.

We also learned that Gabi's Strangulate skill did not stop the transformation. He could however use Mind Freeze without a problem.

Moorabi casts his transform ability every 10 seconds until at 50%. Then he casts transform every 5 seconds with the cast times getting quicker and quicker. They come so fast that you basically have to anticipate them and cast your spell before you even saw the cast bar to beat the lag.

Our problem came about transformation #4. We were doing alright having Earynn interrupt first, Gabi second, Earynn third and I was given this horrible fourth interrupt with my counterspell. I started getting the interrupt down but it was difficult and touchy since I was trying to anticipate and catch the cast before I saw it. The problem was when I did successfully stop the fourth transformation we would be stopped by the fifth.

We finally abandoned this plan and sent Earynn to Ironforge to respec into Reverberation that would bring his Earth Shock from 6 to 5 seconds. We changed our order to Gabi first, me second and then Earynn just spamming his earthshock every time it was available to take care of the five second transforms.

We were all about at our wits end at this point but after a few practices with Earynn's new talented spell we did it. Oh it was sweet sweet relief!

After this victory we were spent. Hours of working on these achievements was tiring work! We were all just so happy to have Less-rabi finished we disbanded to allow us to relax and get some food.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Less Is More

I've been a bit under the weather lately (don't worry I'm really starting to feel better) so my time adventuring has been slightly less than normal. Added to that we're in a sort of lull as some very important raid members headed for warmer climates and sandy beaches. Not that I blame them, I just miss them.

Yesterday was a scheduled raid night and without those two we really decided to sort of putz around with the seven we did have. I joined my first fight in Wintergrasp and thanks to Earynn's excellent guidance I would say I did fairly well. I totally dig being on those giant what-cha-ma-jigs and casting frost-firey doom on all the little Hordies. We even won the match which was exciting.

Afterwards we gathered up our brave seven and decided to kill Archavon. I personally stepped out to allow Aratria more practice with healing raids. She did well and Archavon was destroyed.

Then our crazy and fearless leader Geearthur called for us to assemble and attempt Sartharion. There's special recognition for defeating him with less than nine and we were certain our seven could do it. Aratria returned to her alchemy lab to allow me to offer my damaging spells for our attempt. It did take us two tries but the second attempt couldn't of gone smoother than if we were a full raiding team. It was announced that I was an achiever of "Less is More". Something I'm quite proud of.

The rest of the week should be relaxing as we wait for our vacationers return but I don't mind. A break from raiding now and then recharges the excitement!