A Diary from Draenor

Everyone gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense.
Gertrude Stein


A Diary from Draenor

Today’s Fantasy Date: Nov. 11, 2015 — it is supposed to Blizzard in Wyoming today.

Blizzcon has come and gone, it was a huge convention. I watched the free stream of the opening ceremony and then made a bowl of oatmeal.

News keeps coming out. But here is the deal: watch out for class news as it impacts directly on how you will play, go easy on the future content (zones, questing, raids) because you want to discover that on your own when it comes out.

Gertrude Stein and Ernest Hemingway declared the kids who grew up during World War One to be the Lost Generation. Of course, our hero Dorothy Parker said “Yay! We are lost!”. Now, one hundred years later, I wonder how lost they were? And what is our current generation?

I want to think that we are cynical and savvy and in tune with this ever-changing world. But we are really dumb and naïve, all over again! We fell for the 16 glasses of water a day scam that spawned the water bottle business. We fell for eggs are bad. We fell for almost every diet trend and the high costs of those diets over and over again. We spend millions on moisturizing cream when we could simply drink more water!

Naïve again, we are buying Fitbits. The doctors say (in caps, I suppose) The Doctors Say that we should have 2000 steps a day for healthy living. Nothing wrong with plenty of steps. But, it is selling a lot of pedometer watches. Suckered again.

Pre 6.2.3 patch, this is the slow end time of an expansion. One of my favorite times too! There is nothing to keep caught up on, certainly nothing compelling. Get out of the darn house and take a walk — in fact, my cheeks are cold still from my walk today.

We log in now at the end days to play with our friends. That is the best part. We can throw a party. We can chat and look into achievements that we’ve ignored or try a new class.

Today, to this blog, I have visitors from United States, Israel, Belgium, Germany and New Zealand.


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Righting Supergirl – Part II

How To Save Supergirl

It’s only episode three. Ratings are settling down. Competition from Monday Night Football will remain for a couple of months and then some relief.

The show is seriously flawed.

Lets look at how to fix Supergirl.

I’ve Got a Secret.
Supergirl has a secret identity. This is why we love watching this kind of show. From Twelfth Night by Shakespeare to The Prince and the Pauper by Twain to My Favorite Martian, I Dream of Jeannie, Bosom Buddies, That’s So Raven, Hannah Montana, Wizards of Waverly Place and, my goodness, on and on … theater and television has used I’ve Got a Secret forever. It works.

The super hero formula is all about secret identities and the inherent conflict of a dual role.

And really, at base, don’t we all think that if people truly knew us that they’d love us? In that way, we all relate to super heroes.

The script writers have to exploit the idea of Kara pretending to be a human (with her super powers!). We, as audience, love being in on the secret. Look at that bully push around Clark Kent when we know he can kick the bully’s ass! And then watch Clark get him back, subtly using his super powers, in a clever way. We love this.

A Love Interest
Tying Supergirl with James Olson was a mistake. It has to end now. Stop it. Everyone is going to love Supergirl, she has super charisma. She wants someone to love her as Kara, the human she is pretending to be.

Take Control
Supergirl has got to stop serving the DoE. She has to make them serve her. She has to be strong and confident when it comes to the Monster of the Week. This dynamic has got to turn around.

Ally McBeal
I’ll admit, the only three dimensional character on the show is her editor. Ms. Flockhart is a terrific actress. This story arc and relationship is one I’ll let the writers continue, it is interesting.

That’s about it! Let Kara as Human start to pretend to be human with super powers hidden. Let her emotional side be wishful because, in fact, she can never have physical sex with a human (she’d break him or her). That is a love in a tragic beautiful way — we could milk that for years.

Righting Supergirl

The Supergirl writers and why they need to grow.

I’m upset (simply as a fan) at the poor writing for the television show Supergirl. I was joking in my first writings that they were high school kids who’d only seen the movie with Christopher Reeve. It turns out I was right. They are kids.

I lived in Los Angeles for 25 years. I was not IN the Hollywood industry, I lived very happily next door to it. I worked in the Industry (as they call it) and I also taught students who would go into that Industry.

Hollywood has always looked for the hot new kid. At least since, 1980. Before that it was smart and mature and made a lot of money. Now it is scatter-shot and a lottery. With the ease of producing movies, television and content in general: I can only guess it’s cheaper to take risks.

You see, I’m not interested in talent. Talent is cheap. I am interested in Talent Realized.

Lets take an example. Jimmy Fallon is talented. He absolutely sucks as a talk show host. He can’t interview the guest. He dominates and interrupts and it’s embarrassing.

By the way, Stephen Colbert is just as bad. I watched Scarlett Johannsen tell him to stop it. He was so amped up that he kept winging in one-liners.

But there is hope for these two guys. They are both Talented. Jimmy Fallon could mature into a real talk show host. Johnny Carson did it. Craig Ferguson did it as did David Letterman. Jay Leno never did, he just waited to tell his joke; really, a horrible man.

I watch Jimmy and Stephen, they are all we get. They both suck at their jobs but they can mature into it. They can realize their talent and be artists at their job as talk show hosts.

I read the Sookie Stackhouse series. It became a popular HBO series called …. True Blood? If you were to read her books, you can see her getting better as a writer, book by book.

Why Hollywood gambles on Talent with the hope for magic instead of investing in Talent Realized is beyond me.

Once upon a time, I worried that all the “non content” shows like Survivor and So You Think You Can Dance would hurt Hollywood because they were not training writers. Think of the hundreds of reality shows … no writers, just a producer with an arc.

Artists need to learn from each other. Simple things like how to write a joke. How to tell a story. It is a sad day in Hollywood, my friends.

Somehow, the writers for Supergirl have to grow up faster than Supergirl. They have talent.

Supergirl: Fight or Flight

Three episodes, eleven writers.
Something is wrong here.

I’d hoped to enjoy this series enough to write just a wee bit on each episode and watch as the character evolved. The writing is horrible. The directors and writers are mostly Hollywood hipsters and have as much depth as a bootlegger’s shot glass.

Writing is a craft. Story telling is an art-form. My DNA is offended by this show.

I got my list off of IMDB. Maybe those eleven writers include future episodes. I don’t know. Wanting a show “young and hip and current” does not mean you need to hire children to write the material.

Let’s see … what can we expect from these writers.

Kara gets amnesia!
Kara loses her powers!
Kara is exposed to white kryptonite and is Evil Kara!
Kara has an evil twin!
Kara falls in love and has her heart broken …. poor Kara.

How To Host A Party In WoW

How to host a party with prizes, gold rewards, fireworks and decorations.

Having a good time in the World of Warcraft!


** This is part of several postings on How to Host in WoW. You can click the tag on the left to see all of the articles.


Whether hosting a wedding, scavenger hunt, costume party or a guild party; dressing up the party makes it a bit more fun.

Prizes:

  • Presents can be wrapped if they are not soulbound nor stackable. This limits the list a little bit but not too much. Popular are Dalaran Brownies, Cagable Pets and Mounts. Oddly bags cannot be wrapped up but still make a great prize!
    • Blue Ribboned Wrapping Paper can be bought year round, the link is here for all of the vendors.
    • Red Ribboned Wrapping Paper can be bought year round, the link is here for all of the vendors.
    • Green Ribboned Wrapping Paper can only be bought during Winter Veil! It is near the presents and stuff in Ironforge, stock up when you can!
    • My Guild Master has a prize tab and it has in it: pets, mounts, mysterious fortune cards, Noble’s Monocle, Rhinestone Sunglasses, Stormchops, Origami Crane, Flawless Battle Stone, Delicious Chocolate Cake, Lovely Blue Dress, Vial of Sands, Coalfist Gronnling, Swift Love Bird, Awesomefish, Elune Stones, fireworks and more. Obviously my Guild Master throws a great party.

Gold Rewards
This is the carrot to get people to participate. The amount doesn’t matter, it only matters that they win! And we want them to win. Gold might come from the guild vault or you just pony it up as a host. I’ve thought of entry fees (donations to the guild vault) but have never tried it.

Dressing Up Your Party
There are plenty of ways to have a costume ball, here are a few ideas.

  • The Fancy Darkmoon Feast from the Darkmoon Faire is terrific. For only 10 Darkmoon Daggermaw (fish!), you can dress your entire party (top hat and suit for the men, fancy hat and dress for the women): it’s a bit of Gilnean old English feel. This is very inexpensive and much fun.
  • The Darkmoon Seesaw is a very fun toy for your party. It appears with Lunk on the other side and anyone who tries it will get flipped in the air. If you ask him to leave, two players can teeter-tooter. You get a buff called Childlike Wonder, which shrinks you down. Everyone in your party can be kids again.
  • Savory Deviate Delight is a very old cooking recipe. This is not a feast, it would have to be passed out. Anyone who eats it will become either a Pirate or a Ninja!
  • This idea is a bit tricky. Use your Magic Pet Mirror on Terky to transform into a Murloc. Then have everyone use their Ai-Li Skymirror on you. A party full of Murlocs! Screen shot that for your twitter!  Remember to /dance!

Decorations
How are you going to make this look like a party?

  • Fireworks can be made by engineers and some are sold. There are also toys which will light up the sky.
  • Nat’s Fishing Chair, the Cushion toys from Winter Veil and the Mushroom Chair from the Molten Front can provide seating for those winded from all the dance party bombs.
  • Stinker and the Bombay Cat (or Feline Familiar).
  • Egbert is a classic.
  • As many party goers as can, have them use balloons, kites or lanterns. Getting your pet up off the ground really makes for a festive air.

This is macro of some atmospherics. They are all on different cooldowns but click away as you will. Add to it if you like. These are all instant cast.

/use Everlasting Alliance Firework
/use Pandaren Firework Launcher
/use Bubble Wand
/use Kaldorei Wind Chimes
/use Power Converter

Booze
What’s a party without drinks? I’m thinking there are plenty of booze toys and pets now to serve your party. Still, I’d like to give a shout out to the Sulfuron Slammer. It will set you on fire when you drink it!

Have fun. I hope this How To Host ideas serves as springboard for new ideas!


Transmog Party in Wow

How to Host a Costume Party in the World of Warcraft

Or, more correctly, a Transmog Contest.


** This is part of several postings on How to Host in WoW. You can click the tag on the left to see all of the articles.


Blizzcon (2015) was yesterday. The next expansion, Legion, will offer a new tmog system that is similar to Diablo 3’s system. Every piece you have ever encountered will be in your library including past quest rewards and even quests that are no longer in the game. And … it is account wide.

Players will have the ability to create “sets” and save them and even hot-key them to your action bar so you can have a In Town casual set with a top hat and tails and a I’m A Raider set that is all of your Tier Two set from eight years ago.

Hosting a Transmog Contest serves several needs.

  • It gives players a chance to show off their sets.
  • It is a group activity for the guild that is purely social and for everyone.
  • It can promote your guild on your server (I recommend this).

Mechanics

  • Pick two or three non-participants to be judges, a simple ranking of between one and ten on each contestant should be fine. They can be in their own channel in vent.
  • Choose a location.
    • I like the table where we kill Coren Direbrew. We have the remote and it is a very remote location. Horde band and booze vendor nearby.
    • I really like to host in a major city like Ironforge. It generates interest in your guild and, after all, transmogs are for showing off. Expect some rube to crash your party, take it in stride.
    • Find a runway. There are many all over Azeroth. Perhaps that fountain area in the green in Desolace.
  • Announce the contest well in advance and invite everyone to the party. Times can be after a raid or simply in the afternoon on a Sunday.
  • Establish the criteria (see below).
  • Have a reward. 2000 gold should do it for first prize. On my Legion wish-list is the ability for the Guild Master to confer temporary titles (good for 24 hours). I’d love to be Special Snowflake Wrathsome or King for a Day Wrathsome or Guild Hero Wrathsome.

Criteria
Costumes should be judged on three things. Some overlap but that is true for every judgement call.

  • Completeness. Are all of the pieces in place? If someone goes for a Stormshield Guard, the set needs to be complete.
  • Originality. Not all tmogs are from sets, happily.
  • Theme. I wonder about this one. I’d like it to be that if someone went for Green Hunter or Stealthy Rogue that they could be applauded.

The Show
If your contest is private, feel free to vent up. If it is in a public setting, then encourage your attendees to use /s. Let one person spam Trade if you want to call outside players to enjoy.

  • Use Elune’s Stone to shine a down light and a place to stand for the player.
  • Let the player have three emotes. A soldier would salute, kneel and train. A party girl would dance, wave and cheer.
  • Cheer and applaud everyone!
  • Give each person 30 seconds and then …. move along please.
  • Finding a platform to stand on is ideal, they are everywhere!
  • Relax and have fun.

It is the event itself that matters. People want to show off! Who wins should not be super important as much as having a party.

I was encouraged at the Q&A at Blizzcon. Hopefully it will let us easily include a wider range of friends than only your guild. I have raiding friends who’d be excluded from this party today. Perhaps a new set of chat channels?

  • Q: Warcraft has always been about community. Can we have affiliated guilds with combined calendars and scheduling?
  • A: There are more and more groups that transcend server boundaries, and we want to work towards delivering on this and helping groups of friends with shared interests regardless of server or battlegroup.

Have fun. Announce the winner in the Message of the Day. Plan your NEXT one soon!

Vigilante Justice

“Sometimes justice is better served by those who have experienced the pain”
― Mark W. Boyer


Vigilante Justice

I read about a guild in WoW on a pvp realm. They’d take bounty on players who’d been jerks. You can see in Trade Chat when someone is being mean. Someone would offer a fee to this guild and they’d make that jerk’s play time a hell for about a week. Vigilante Justice.

Louis L’Amour, the writer of the Old West told a true story in one of his fiction books. The story is of a gang of outlaws who decided to take over a town. A small town with a church, school, bank and a few stores which was in some out of the way area. The town folk shot that gang into doll rags.

Why can not we, who have been wronged by Enron or had our lives destroyed by identity thieves, go into some fatcat’s house and drag him out and hang him from a light post?

Did you know that if I see a person breaking into my car that I can not shoot him? The lawyers say that he is not a threat to me, so I can not shoot him. I’d just watch him ruin my life.

The US government is pouring money, pouring money into security. Yet, crime is rampant. In New Jersey (as I recall) there is a city that has had five mayors in a row be convicted of corruption. Five in a row! Who owns our cities? Not our government or society or the people, that is for sure.

At this very moment, the head of the democrats and the head of the republicans in New York State are both being nailed for corruption. They stepped down from their post but did not quit their jobs. Why can’t we just shoot these guys? They have not learned to behave and lawyers make sure they get off with a song.

Maybe with all that cyber-security some government bozo is reading this post! I hope so. He is failing at his job. Dude, you fail.

We can’t do it ourselves because we are supposed to trust our police to protect us. They are failing at their jobs. So, why not go shoot an asshole?

Maybe it is because our youth have grown up in the hip-hop generation. Cop Killer. Fuck the Police. Me and my AK. Hip-Hop is huge and there is not one sunny happy song in the genre. What a dark cloud to raise our children under.

Could it be that we didn’t spank our children? We were told that it is child abuse. Yet, our kids are not respecting our teachers, parents, police or the manager at WalMart. Were we right to not spank our kids? Is anyone, anyone at all, considering that we may have been wrong?

Vigilante Justice — sign me up.