Mr. Meh says …

I had a crap weekend. I worked all of it. Literally, wake up, go the office, work like crazy, sleep, rinse, and repeat.

Somewhere on Sunday in about my 5th useless meeting, that could be described as a pool party of ignorance and stupidity, all without the joy of water to force down their wind pipes, I started to have visions. My pen turned into a sword, and I would run about slashing a hacking as if I were an enraged Disciple of Khaine. About my chaos and havoc, was a devious smile and gallons of blood to bask in my glory.

At a point in which during one idiot’s long banter of useless crap, I was debating in my head; where exactly I would need to slice his neck to cause one of those anime style blood fountains to rain Khaine’s gift among the rest of my soon to be victims. It then occurred to me: I have a problem.

I need to make sure I get enough Warhammer Online per day, or I’ll get rage withdrawals.

Yeah …. that’s the problem. ((shifty eyes))

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Warhammer Online: Healing: Why Shielding isn’t in your RR’s Favor

Last night while running in a newb premade (meaning no one is above RR 50 or even 4o and we aren’t using vent), a comment was made about my healing:

“How come it seems like sometimes we take little to no damage, yet other times we seem to fall to 20%, only to be 100% in a millisecond.”

\o/ I guess that’s how it played out. Right?

Maybe. Or maybe your healer wanted some Arpies. I can cast a 1,200 shielding on my group at will. I then can cast a moral 3 that stops 4,500 of physical attacks. That’s a great deal of help in intense fights. However, that doesn’t give me the purple fountain of glory that it should.

See, a healer get’s Renown based on the amount of healing they cast on someone who killed something. You don’t get RR, for shielding them. So if I am confident in the fact I can keep you alive, I will let you take damage, just to earn Renown.

Shielding you gets me this much purple  … take you fingers and pinch them together.

Letting you almost die but then I cast 4 group heals back to back, gets me this much purple … cut off your left arm and throw it to the other side of the room.

I know, I’m a jerk. But that’s the honest truth behind that RP/Zealot solo grouping in the SC. Or the reason why your green bar is low, even though you are staring at 5 healers, probably emoting to one another no less.

 

*Mr. Meh is not responsible for you actually cutting off your arm. Any injuries you sustained while reading this blog is all your fault. Take responsibility for your own stupidity once in a while.

Warhammer Online: A Tale of Re-Nubbing #4: Fake L33Ts

I had quite the week in WAR. Somewhat of a humbling one to start with and then transitioning to awesome. Not a lot of advancement with my character, but I did have a great deal of fun. Saturday started a little rough, I started running some Scenarios, trying my hand at the LE for Phoenix Gate. In one case we had them spawn camped so bad, I got bored and started to run the Flag. On my 2nd run with the flag I encountered a solo Shadow Warrior. Looked like he was holding the 65 renown bow, so I know he probably had some decent experience. Not that I ever had a high level Shadow Warrior, but one of my favorite players on PT and Badlands did, and I seem to remember him claiming that DoKs were his favorite thing to kill. Never understood how. Maybe its the armor debuffs, maybe the snares, don’t exactly know, but he considered himself a DoK killing machine.

In any case, this Shadow Warrior just owned me. It took him 13 seconds, so maybe not PWN’d, but he won. I was quickly snared, relying on heals, I eventually ran out of SE and then I was interrupted during my SE channel (which has a 5 second cooldown for some reason). He clearly knew the process, he was no newb to DoKs, he knew when and what to do. With basically no way left to heal, in a last-ditch effort I went to catch him to build SE again, I just couldn’t get off the second hit to snare him. What could I do? I don’t have the right tactics yet to build my SE fast enough,  and ultimately I was 34 and he was, probably at least 70. 13 seconds isn’t too bad I guess. I didn’t really feel bad, I expected to lose a lot while still low-level.

However the Choppa that had been watching by the ridge, and then came down to kill him after my death, had no issue saying that I sucked in /sc. I had no response, other than I was 34, get over it. He kept harping on it. Not sure if he was upset that lowbies come in a steal the renown from SCs or just wanted to be a dick, but he wouldn’t let it go. He saw no reason I should have lost. He sat most of the SC on his mount, berating me and my lack of skill. I should have stopped responded, but didn’t have the ability. “I’m 3 fucking 4, dude, in Devastator. I have an 80 (bit of exaguration, he’s 70) WP on Badlands, I know what I am doing.”

‘It just goes to show, just cause you make it to 80, doesn’t mean you know how to play. I’ve seen a lot better level 30s than you.’

I had my humbling moment on Gorfang. Maybe I wasn’t the all healing power that I was as a Warrior Priest. Maybe I was never actually all that good, and it was my support on Badlands that made me feel that way. With my experience, maybe I should have been able to survive and win that, even at 34. Not much shakes my cage, but that experience sure did. I did not enter another Scenario as a result. Not to avoid him, but mostly just because I realize how much it sucks that a lowbie can suck up all your renown, without really doing anything. I’ll just stay in the RvR lakes for weekend.

Which wasn’t a bad plan. The keeps and zone locks ended up giving me all the Wards you could possibly earn without gear. Not to mention enough influence to fill the first bar in each zone. I don’t think I have ever finished an influence reward before 40 in the past.

On Destro’s second push to Altdorf I joined an Open Warband. It took me till the 2nd zone flip to notice, it was primarily composed of the Guild that the Super Awesome Choppa of Knowledge belonged to. By the time we went to lock down Kadrin Valley, the said Large Penis Bearing Choppa happened to be in the WB. Not in my group, I had already added him to my not heal list mod, so I went about as normal.

Our job was to guard the northern-most BO by the Order WC, there was action and we were successful in holding back all pushes. I wasn’t sure that I was ready to leave. So basically after about 45 mins of basically sitting in a purple pool of fun, we are minutes from a Altdorf siege. In vent I can hear them say they need to lock the WB and set it up for the alliance. We need to boot the lowbies and non-alliance.

I type in /war, “Welp, thanks for the fun guys. I’m only 34, I’ll go PUG it up.”

In vent I hear: ‘No no Nihk, you’re good. You’re really decent at the heals.’

I was hoping to all of Khaine’s sacrifices for that Flower Scented Poop Factory of a Choppa to say something. I so wanted it. He didn’t though.

Our first instance in the city, we just destroyed Order. It got so easy, staying together was wasteful. It was more fun, to wander about. Their champs died inside of 30 seconds on stage III. However, when we rushed to get into another instance, only 3 of the 4 groups came in. Apparently, since you can’t earn bags because of the lockouts, those participants just decided not to go into the next one. Little shitty to do, without saying so. Whatever, it was quick and only slightly painful.

In many cases I watched my favorite Choppa, who could surely power a city with his wisdom if only we could harvest that sort of awesome, die over and over. In one case he came running from the front lines doing the bunny hop of desperation, that healers are all to used to seeing. You know the one, the 3rd grader jump with hands in the air, ‘pick me, pick me.’ I watched him die, with great joy. I think it was the most roleplaying I had ever done in my gaming. I was truly enjoying the sacrifice of any as if I were actually a Disciple of Khaine.

As he was slowly perishing from the DOTs I could see all about his head (great mod by the way, very useful for healers and cleansing), I thought to take the time to emote a /bye to him. I didn’t; there was a Witch Elf that was going to pull off some nice kills, so I focused on her.

In any case, I felt as though I had my silent revenge on him, twice over no less. I’ve decided to remove him from my Do Not Heal List, because of his guild’s honorable motivations, as well as watching him so pathetically die. To me, it seems like it was now even, and I, I could move on to 40 knowing that I wasn’t the newb the All Mighty Unicorn Riding Prophet of Epicness Choppa, had almost so convinced me of being.

Warhammer Online: Player Stats: Defenses: Wounds Vs. Toughness

Surprisingly, one of my most read articles (that actually has to deal with Warhammer) is one of my first blog entries; Toughness Vs. Wounds. When I go back and read the article, it’s really a horrible story telling rant of crap. I love it. Just the kind of blind mindless rage this game is lacking now. It’s a nice story, and a decent mathematical lecture (meh), but it really strikes me odd that it receives so much traffic even a practical year later. It occurs to me to go to google, and short of ton of forum links, Mr. Meh is the 4th highest resource for information on those stats. Well, crap. That wasn’t my intention. If I knew I was going to be a guide, I would have made it into one.

Better late then never. Presenting Mr. Meh’s updated guide to defensive statistics:

First is to understand the different defensive stats. There are active stats and passive stats.

Basic Passives (These are your most basic stats):

Wounds = 10 Hitpoints (this is your green bar)
This is the most basic stat and the most important. If this is taken to zero, you die.
500 Wounds = 5,000 HP (regardless of rank)

Toughness = 1/5th Reduction to each Damage Point you receive to your HP.
This stat cannot be bypassed or negated. It works on each strike you receive. Mostly PvP based.
500 Toughness will reduce any attack by 100 (regardless of rank)

Resistance Passives (These are more passive specialized defenses):

Armor = % of mitigating Physical Attacks. [Armor Value/(Level*110)] = % of mitigation with a cap of 75%. Toughness is applied before Armor. Mostly PvE concentrated.
3,000 Armor = 68.18% of each Physical Attack (Rank 40)

Magic Defenses (Corporeal, Spirit, Elemental) = % of mitigating the particular Magic attack. [Magic Resistance Value/(Level of Attacker*.42)] = % of mitigation. Toughness is applied before resistances
400 Corporeal Resistance = 23.8% of each Corporeal Attack (Rank 40 Attacker)

Active Defenses (These are stats that have another attack or speciality feature with a defensive bonus):

Weapon Skill = % chance to Parry (Negate a Melee Physical Attack)
[Weapon Skill Value/(Level*7.5+50) *13.5] = % of Negation Chance. WS also boost your Armor Penetration for your Melee Attacks.
500 Weapon Skill =  19.3% chance to Parry (Level 40)

Initiative = % chance to Dodge (Negate a Ranged Physical Attack)
[Initiative Value/(Level*7.5+50)*13.5] = % of Negation Chance. Initiative also boost your ability to see cloaked enemies.
500 Initiative = 19.3% chance to Dodge (Level 40)

Willpower = % chance to Disrupt (Negate a Magical Attack)
[Willpower Value/(Level*7.5+50)*13.5] = % of Negation Chance. Willpower also boost your HPS.
500 Willpower = 19.3% chance to Disrupt (Level 40)

Block= % chance to Block (Negates any type of Attack EI Shield)
[Block Value/(Level*7.5+50)*5] = % of Negation Chance. 
300 Block = 4.3% chance to Block (Level 40)

Besides Wounds and Toughness, any other defensive stat uses your level to decide the percentage for mitigation. With the exception to Magic resistances using the attackers level. This is why is seems that the level 32 Bright Wizard can hit for half the amount of his bigger older brother that is 40.

Notes:

You cannot really mitigate many of the Moral Attacks. If it’s an attack that says it will strike for X, it will infact strike for X.
Defenses have an order to which they are checked. Like any arithmetic. The system first sees whether you can Parry/Dodge/Disrupt/Block, then it mitigates by using your toughness, then checks resistances Armor/MR. The resulting damage then hits your HP.

Ultimately players become thoroughly confused on what to do for boosting stats. They probably can understand the benefit of each, but also know specialization is a better idea. In many cases you have players just trying to figure out how to be more durable. And this leads to the mistakes made with stacking the wrong type of defense.

Short answer: Unless you are a tank that already has naturally high Toughness, toughness is not going to really help your cause. The point of toughness is to mitigate a little bit off each attack. So naturally a tank dancing about in the front lines being hit by everyone’s DoT (damage over time) and normal attack, the ability to remove 200 DPS off a normal 400 DPS hit, is pretty useful to the healer trying to keep the tank alive. But it also helps, he has naturally high armor, magic resistances, weapon skill, initiative and also has the ability to carry a shield.

You however might be a Choppa, or a Bright Wizard, or a Witch Elf. You have specialized defenses. Choppa has WS, BW has Willpower, WE has Initiative. Mitigating 200 DPS off of 500 DPS hits really means nothing for you. Because the tank can take about 20 of those before he needs a heal, you can take about 3 before you die, shamefully.

You have base stats from your character and from your armor pieces. You have a lot of freedom with your talisman slots and your renown bonuses on what directions you can take. So after your done maxing out Strength/Intelligence/Ballistic Skill, you are probably looking for some defense. This is why you should be looking at Wounds, not Toughness if you aren’t a tank.

Example of Non-tank:

Let’s take a well-rounded toon, like a Warrior Priest/DoK. At 40/40 they probably have base Wounds at 500 and Toughness at 350 (Annihilator should be around there).

This means they have 5,000 HP and can mitigate 70 damage per strike.

Between Talismans (7 slots at about~22 stat per tali = 150) and Renown (40 points with 20 spent on Willpower = 60 points left ) you can find another 210 points to spend on Wounds or Toughness in some way or another.

Scenario 1: Toughness
Wounds = 500
Toughness = 560

This means they have 5,000 HP still, but can mitigate 112 damage per hit.

Scenario 2: Wounds
Wounds = 710
Toughness = 350

This means they have 7,100 HP, but can still only mitigate 70 damage per hit.

The basic difference here is 2,100 HP and then 42 mitigated damage.
So what’s the trade-off? How many strikes do you have to take to make toughness worth it?2,100 HP /42 Damage = 50 strikes)

You have to get hit 50 times (say 50 to yourself out loud) to make Toughness worth wild against Wounds. Then think to yourself, can you even survive getting hit 50 times? If you are a healer, maybe, with some help. But ultimately, you can take about 7 to 9 hits before you have an ‘oh shit, detaunt and self heal/run away moment.’ Your point of having better defenses, was to live just another 2 or 3 more seconds, to get off that moment saving heal, or that killing blow. How often have you been a 1/2 second from casting that moral 3? Wounds will get you there, not toughness.

Tank Example:

Now, however, the opposite is valued for you if you are a tank. Especially a shielded one.

Tank 1: Wounds
(W) 1,250 = 12,500 HP
500 = 100 DPS reduction  

Tank 2: Toughness
(W) 1,000 = 10,000 HP
750 = 150 DPS reduction  

Both encounter the same situation. And AoE blast that averages 600 DPS over 20 Seconds.

Tank 1 actually mitigates 100 off the 600 and takes 500 DPS. Over 20 seconds (500*20) that’s an HP loss of 10,000; leaving him with 2,500 HP, approximately 20% left. But still 10K to heal.

Tank 2 takes 150 off 600 for 450 DPS. Over 15 seconds (450*20) = 9,000 lost, leaving that guy with 1000 HP, and approximately 10%.

Now the obvious is that as solo fights go, clearly the (W) is a better choice. More HP left, which means he could fight longer. For soloing, (W) has a greater benefit for defense. If the fight went for another couple of seconds, Tank 2 would be dead. In the end, each tank looks at the Green bar and sees, how full it is.

The big BUT here is that these guys need healing. And from an outside view, the healer sees two green bars, one slightly more to the left then the other. The healer doesn’t see 2,500 HP vs 1,000 HP, he sees 20% and 10% bars in green, saying he’s a good judge of a laggy green bar. He also has no idea that one missing 10,000 HP vs. 9,000 HP. That healer can produce 1,000 HPS before running out of AP between HoTs and instant casts, for the sake of argument beyond 4 seconds. So if the object were to heal the two Tanks, then big deal, the first Tank takes a second or 2 longer to heal. But say the healer is like any healer and he/she has to take of their herd, of 5 others, maybe including themselves. In that case, the healer’s HPS is actually 200 HPS per each of their people. Of course saying they are a decent healer, and don’t just let BW/Sorc die. In any case, that means the first tank will take 5 seconds longer to heal up. Those are heals that maybe coming off of more squishy more vulnerable players.  Worse yet, if the fight keeps going, the first tank will actually drain the healers’ AP, costing everyone to die.

If you are a tank stacking Wounds, you are killing your group because your healer is spending too much time on you.

Bottom line: Tanks using Toughness create easier heals for them and more heals for others. Tanks that use Wounds are selfish asshats that have an apparent goal to simply be the last to die in the inevitable wipe to come.

Warhammer Online: RIP Annihilator

I getting ready make my 9th level 40 toon. My Disciple of Khaine hit 35 over the weekend and I am encountering 2 problems I didn’t think would come true:

I can’t keep my XP level away from my Renown level. I level and bam, my purple bar is practically right back up to full. (I know, what a horrible problem)
And I’m probably going to have every piece of Invader, Warlord and Sovereign before I have Annihilator. (Sad for a 35, horay for the 60)

Being my 9th level 40, I have experienced multiple issues each time I have gotten in to T4. My first Warrior Priest (2008) was RR12, the thought of RvR Orange gear was not in my thought process. When I got my White Lion to 40 (2008), I again had the same Renown issue, my goal was Sentinel. My second Warrior Priest (Dec 2008) was very well off in Renown, but my access to gear seemed out of reach. I also gave up on that server fairly easy. My Engineer (Winter 2009) probably was my first experience in gaining Mythic gear. But gear grinding Forts to only gain 3 peices of Conqueror after 2 months gave me a bad taste. Not because of the Engineer, but because of the server not having balance in the right classes. But that was the issue with Ostermark. When we transferred to Phoenix Throne, mostly because of my guild wanted to level new toons, I made a bunch of toons all with no issues gaining low-level gear.

I levelled an Archmage and another Warrior Priest side by side (Summer 2009). I eventually left the AM to fully level the Warrior Priest, who eventually became the on the only toon I made over RR50. Along with other very quick levelling experiences with the Rune Priest and Knight. I noticed that Annihilator was too easy to acquire. But that was 8 months ago.

It’s kind of funny how things change without really realizing it. There is no shortage of keeps being taken, but there is also no shortage of players helping in the seige. I have yet, out of about 25+ keep takes, to be even in the top 10 of the rolls. What’s even more depressing, though I never thought I would want this, breaking down crest no longer gives the 5 of the lower type. I guess you should feel bad breaking down a Royal. But if you are lvl35 and already have 55 of them, at that rate, I don’t think I need to be worried about having enough crest by the time I’m 80. Same for Invader (110) and Warlord (55). Compare that to Officer at a quantity of 135. Seems to me that the new issue is having enough Officer Crest. That and achieving the best gear is now just a matter of time.

Makes you wonder if the ploy is a short-term answer to holding on to your player base a bit longer. It’s certainly not a long-term answer. However, it might be an opening before another introduction. Not much is known about Red Plague or what it involves. It be nice to see an introduction of more gear. Making your ability to have Sovereign gear, just a given of time. Maybe we aren’t too far from seeing a PVE equivalent, or possibly another step above. That’s just my speculation. Otherwise the high level gear grinding has become far too easy.

I guess my woes of having full Annihilator gear by now are really minor. Being able to look forward and know that because of the heavy high renown rank on the other end and the access to the cities, this and other toons will have no problem having the nice stuff when they get there. By 35, I have unlocked all the Lesser Wards, 4/5ths of the Greater and 3 of the Superior. Unfortunately, without Forts, I’m not going to be able to get all 5 of the Greater, nor the 5th of the Superior to achieve that either. I was hoping to jump right into Lost Vale as soon as I hit 40. I want that healing kit on my DOK, I loved it on my Warrior Priest. I’ll have to figure out what to do when I hit 40. Conqueror and Invader aren’t appealing as healing friendly for a DOK.

WAR vs W40K: Millenniums Away

Thanks to E3; fans of Warhammer and Genre MMOs alike could feast their eyes on first glimpses of W40K: Dark Millennium. Beyond the trailer and some very short words, I have been trying to find some type of review or article from some kind of interaction at the convention. Finally, MMORPG.com’s, Garrett Fuller posted his first glimpse.

Unfortunately, he doesn’t really have more information than what you can take guesses at by watching the trailer. We basically can see the same thing. However he does get to ask the question: what are the factions? To which he received smiles and was told we wouldn’t be disappointed. Oh well, we’ll just have to sit and wait.

How long? Predictions were originally at 2012. Mainly speculations from at least sources that know what they are looking at, are thinking 2013. That’s a long fricken time.

So in 2 to 3 years, what is in stake for the niche players of Warhammer genres:

Players like me are probably going to stick with WAR. Not only because of our Warhammer fandom, but mainly because of the massive PvP. Even short of the RvR, I do enjoy the gameplay, the stability and to a degree, the community. I think the other couple hundred thousand of us feel close to the same thing. There really isn’t something out there to take us away. Doesn’t keep players like myself from looking though. I’m sure a good deal of us, are trying some mature game out. And quite a few of us jump as soon as something seemingly big releases. Like me, you probably have a copy of Aion Online sitting on your shelf that caused you to slow down in WAR just for a small time.

I, for one, am extremely excited about Dark Millennium. The few pictures and glimpses I can see make me happy. It’s graphically awesome to me; it’s dark (despite the awful opinions of some), and it looks immense so far. My current times of drooling and daydreaming on what the glory of W40K will be, it brings me to wonder, what does that mean for WAR?

Say this is 2012, and W40K: DM is about to release, what type of state is WAR in for? To me, I’m pretty sure SWTOR is probably going to help kill its partner before that takes place. But even with SWTOR in existence, you still have the Warhammer nerds and the fans of Mythic RvR. Will SWTOR be able to actually pull those players away? From everything I am seeing with SW now, I’m not sure of its RvR or PvP aspect, if at all any. The signs of BioWare Developers playing WAR leads us to believe it’s coming. But I’m not sold on the graphics and content of the game. I know WAR wasn’t really praised all that well, but I felt the graphics were amazing for an MMO. Besides an Aion Online, and to a degree EQII type asian games, not too many MMOs are boasting graphics that are decent, let alone fantastic. I thought WAR did a great job for a 2008 game. When I watch anything SWTOR, I feel as though I am in 2005. I’m just not impress graphically and content wise yet.

When I see the trailer and gameplay of W40K though, I am throughly impressed. To a point at which I feel as though it was all a giant movie, and they just added some fake UI to make us think it was game play. At some points, I wasn’t sure if it was Dark Millennium or the upcoming RPG, Space Marine that I was viewing. W40K is not getting a lot of hype yet. It might not ever, don’t know. But based on WAR being a genre of niche players, and SW, is going to be the same, it seems to me that W40K is ultimately going to release and have the trump card for winning all those niche-like players.

I wonder how much of that very possible reality is effecting EA decisions. Is a simple trailer from THQ/Vigil on W40K enough to completely destroy any future plans for WAR, saying that there were big plans. I know, Red Plague and all that jazz; Live Event or Expansion it’s in the works apparently. However, realistically if you place you feet in the shoes of Darth Vader (I’m assuming he’s running EA), you look at WAR’s timeline and somewhere you are just going to have to be realistic. You have little less than 300K (maybe) in subscriptions. You are already putting most of your eggs in SWTOR. Despite it’s release, you’ll still have WAR subscriptions. Mostly composed of Warhammer fan boys, RvR enthusiast (saying SWTOR lacks it) and just those unwilling to leave their 80s behind. But then in another year, you are going to be facing W40K. So if SWTOR didn’t remove those fan boys, another Warhammer genre surely will.

That’s really the simple outlook (simple as in the mindset of the blogger thinking it :D). And the truth of the matter in the Table Top version of Warhammer; we only all really like 40K, we just have Fantasy armies because we wanted some variety. If Mythic had 40K, and THQ was building Fantasy, I (and I am sure many other TT players) would be a lot less excited. Still excited though I am sure.

Just my thought process for today,