Greetings From the Other Side, a.k.a Fatherhood

I know it’s been an awfully long time, far longer than it should have been.  For that I do apologize.  I have not, however, been nearly as lazy as I have been busy.  Also, I clearly still have a pulse, though exercising that pulse to write hasn’t happened. What did happen, you ask?  Well…

Not too long after my last post, my wife, who was 8 months pregnant at the time, was put on bedrest for the remainder of her pregnancy.  about a month after that, I was at work when my phone rang, and she told me that they would induce her that day.  That actually didn’t happen until the next day, and several hours and a C-section later:

 Ava was born.  As advertised, it was one of the greatest moments of my life.  I thought the expression “you can’t understand until you have kids” was pretty trite but it really is true.  I’m looking forward to (and dreading, in some cases) finding out what that expression will mean to me in about 20 years.
Anyway.  I knew that raising my little girl was going to take a lot of my time.  Although I wasn’t too far off on how much time it would take, I didn’t take into account how much sleep I’d be losing.  I don’t think that I’ve slept in once in the last few months, and I think the opportunity to do so isn’t going to present itself any time soon.
What all of this means is that I barely have enough time currently to play WoW, much less write about it, though I’m certainly not complaining.  I would say that I went from playing 15-25 hours a week to 3-6 hours a week, and that’s more out of necessity than dislike of the current content.  On that note, in Cataclysm, I would say that being a much more casual player really limits what you can get out of the game, and that’s quickly draining my interest, a.k.a,  I can only level a toon so many more times before I go insane.
So with all of that, I’m not sure where WoW is heading in general, or for me.  I don’t plan on quitting anytime soon, but I’d be lying if I said that I still have the same drive to log on that I once did.  I will be taking an official break from writing about it, partly because I never considered myself an expert on being a Rogue and I’m certainly much farther from being one now than I ever was.  Also, I really just don’t have enough time.  I’ve written this whole post with my daughter asleep in my lap, so I had to multitask just to get this out there.  I’ll leave you with this for now:
I’ll get her trained up, and Ava can game herself soon enough.  For now, I bid you farewell and hope that , time permitting, I’ll be able to write again soon.  It’s been fun.
– Sam

Bucklers of Swash is Recruiting!

I don’t normally advertise for my guild here, but since trade chat is all but useless now on our server and we’re in need of some more players to solidify our raids, I figured this was as good a place as any to get the word out.

If you’re serious about raiding, but want a  fun natured guild, Bucklers of Swash (Mug’thol US – Alliance) might be a good fit for you.  We’re currently recruiting to fill a few holes in our two raid groups.  Our guild has veteran raiders who are ready to attack the content, but eight people does not make a full raid for either of our groups. 

We’re certainly open to all players but our greatest areas of need for raiding are:

  • Tanks of any class
  • Non Priest healers
  • Ranged DPS, especially Hunters and Warlocks

Our raid times are not set in stone, but our two groups currently raid on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday at both 7 Eastern and 10 Eastern.  If you would like any additional information, feel free to email me or check out for additional information and our application forum. 

Since it’s likely that you’d be switching servers or even factions, should you be interested, I’d advise you roll a low-level character on Mug’thol and spend some time getting to know us before you make your decision. 



P.S. – I should warn you, if you were to decide to come to Mug’thol and join BoS, you’d be stuck with me.  🙂

The Rude Awakening

I came to a conclusion last week while my group was Raiding.  We’re not ready.  Seeing multiple attempts fail around the same time and in the same way wasn’t pleasant and it was unexpected for the veteran raiders in my group.  I won’t be cliche and repeat the title, but you get the point.  I did some thinking, and had two completely opposite reactions to the issue.

My first reaction was to think, they’ve really overtuned this.  I  honestly thought: hey, I’ve got mainly the same players that I had when we had progressed through Lich King, there’s no way this should be this hard as the first tier of raiding.  My team should be able to handle this easily, and Blizzard has obviously overshot with the difficulty of its encounters.

Then I slept on it and realized that yes, the new raid content is more challenging than anticipated, but my guys should be able to handle it.  That being said, we weren’t.  As such, I began to write a letter to my group for our forums implementing some basic requirements for our raid group.  They are:

  1. Cataclysm Dungeon Hero Achieve
  2. Minimum 346 ilvl equipped
  3. All gear enchanted with Cataclysm (Wrath if appropriate) enchants
  4. All gear gemmed with uncommon quality gems

We’re not raiding again until we’ve got 10 people who can meet this requirement.  I personally have yet to reach these goals.  I have two heroics that I just can’t seem to randomly queue for and will queue manually for them, and I’ve got a belt buckle to obtain.  Other than that though, I’m ready.

To some people these might come off as elitist, but really, are these requirements too much to ask?  We have a large guild with the resources to make obtaining these four things all but trivial.  A time commitment is all that is really necessary.  When you’re talking about encounters where one person has the potential to wipe the raid, you want people with you that have worked hard to earn their spot and will give 100%.

I pose this question:  New content or not, if your group is consistently wiping in the same manner, even after identifying the issues, how would you handle the situation?

– Sam

Requests, Ideas and Life

This post will be a this and that update of sorts about things I’m planning to discuss about WoW and things non-WoW.  For those of you more interested in the latter, we’ll start there.

The Blog:

Yea, I’m still here, and actually getting to work on some of the stuff I should have already finished.  For instance, the Baby Rogue: Cataclysm post was about three paragraphs from finished a month ago.  I’m still getting requests for help with a few areas, most notably gearing and reforging.  I expect to cover those in the near future, but I’ll probably work on the leveling 10-85 guides first.  If there are any other topics that you might want covered, feel free to post it in the comments, and I’ll do my best to get to what I can.  That said….

The Life:

I’ve recently made it through the holidays and then survived Snowmeggedon here in Atlanta.  My wife is now 8 months pregnant with a baby girl and we’re expecting around the middle of March to be pretty busy.  Whether or not that means I’m writing more or less at that point is anyone’s guess at this moment.  It really depends on how much time I still get to play and if I can type a lot while watching the kiddo.  You might be hearing more about downing the diaper boss than clearing raids at that point, but I’ll make a concerted effort to keep up to date with the wide world of Roguery too.

Anyway, I hope everyone enjoyed their holidays, and is on the right track for an awesome 2011.


– Sam

Baby Rogue: Cataclysm Edition

The Cataclsym happened, and for one reason or another, you’ve decided to level a Rogue.  If you’re unfamiliar with the class, and you’re not sure where to start, you’ve come (I hope) to the right place.  In this post, I’ll be discussing the basic mechanics behind the class, the abilities you’ll get in the first 10 levels, and strategy for surviving those levels as well.

Read more of this post


I’m happy to report that I’m steadily chugging along with the leveling game when I can, and I’m about to hit 82 myself.  There’s a few people in the guild that have done the take a few days off work / I’m in college and can stay up indefinitely to get to 85, but that’s not an option for me at the moment.  Sam will likely be 85 this weekend and I’m totally ok with that.  Then comes the whole gearing process.

I’ve also got a plan to get the rest of my alts to 85 before February by leveling each of them one level at a time so that I never run out of rest experience.  Why spend the time to do that?  Every profession at 525.  That’s why.  It saves a ton of money to craft things yourself, and also, you can make a good deal of money if you want.

Anyway, my first impressions are largely positive.  While I didn’t expect (or want) Blizzard to completely remake WoW as a brand new game, they sure have given it a heck of a make-over.  I spent the few week leveling my Bank Alt Warrior from level 25 to level 72.  I got a good sampling of the changes to the old world, and again, found the changes to generally range from good to great.  In the last two days, I’ve noticed more of the same in the two starting zones.

Really my only complaint so far would be realm specific.  On my (PvP) server, my faction is outnumbered somewhere between 5 to 1 and 10 to 1.  Needless to say, I spent most of the first day leveling Archeology and running dungeons, because questing, even stealthily, wasn’t possible.  It wasn’t as bad yesterday, but I spent a good deal of time playing Mr. Sneaky Sneak.  This is going to sound like an exaggeration, but it’s not; it was very disorienting to be the one Alliance Player surrounded by forty or so Horde upon landing in Hyjal. 

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining about world PvP.  I actually enjoy it.  What I’m upset about is the non-response we’re getting from Blizzard about at least attempting to keep some balance between the populations on PvP servers.  Sure, I could server transfer, but that’s expensive for me and my guild, and would probably be the deathblow to the server, as we’re one of the last remaining larger, stable guilds on our side of the server.  Blizzard has already commented on the topic, saying that’s just PvP, but to be honest it’s not.  In our case, it’s more of PvR, or Player versus Raid.  It will be interesting to see if it’s still an issue in a month.

Anyway, the Horde won’t keep my from 85, and I’ll be there soon enough.  My Assassination spec is doing ridiculous damage in instances and the Combat spec is leveling with efficiency.  I am Curious how everyone else’s leveling is going, so pop a comment if you desire.

Happy Trails…

– Sam

Just a Short Funny…

I replied to a comment on the site today, and it didn’t show.  I noticed that despite the correct information being entered into the comment form, I wasn’t logged into WordPress.  At that point, I logged in and noticed something:

I, the writer of the blog, got my comment flagged as spam.

Now, that’s just funny.

– Sam