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Author Archives: Kinless

About Kinless

Gamer. Engineer. Lived lots of places.

Joust doing it

I’d been wondering if I’d ever done it.

Then I did it and kept all *seven* of debuffs on me for the jousting.

Oh, I wasn’t always the jousting machine.  I would do the whack-whack-whack-charge-whack-whack routine.  Took forever.

Now I give them a whack as they ride away, I throw a shield breaker, then charge, then wheel around with another shield breaker, and while they’re asking themselves “WTF?” I’ve closed back with them and whack-whack-whack until they disengage again.  Rinse and repeat.  The shield breaker *then* charge is a new move for me.  But I’ve gotten comfortable with the jousting, being on my 7th character doing so now.  The stuff we do for bling.

Anyway, there’s an add-on I really like and it’s called Joust Do It! It’ll equip your lance when you need it, and reequip your weapon when you don’t.  And it speeds up the NPC interaction as well.

 
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Posted by on August 23, 2010 in Addons, Quests

 

The scammers make me laugh

No invite from the beta yet for me, but that’s not keeping some good folks in China from inviting me to sign up for it on http://www.battelnetworks.com, or battle-net-worldofwarcfrat.com.  It changes day to day.  Either Blizzard has gone insane, and has also honestly forgotten my current e-mail account, or they’ve got some really poor Quality Control over in the hack shops there in Beijing.

And it is China since my interim e-mail provider reported 2 accesses of my account from China shortly after the initial hacks had taken place.

BAD HACKER, BAD.  您是壞人民。  請中止。

But it’s amusing because it’s so pitifully bad.

Blizzard’s recommendation is to bookmark their sites for yourself.  And if somebody wants you to click something taking you there, take your own link there.

 
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Posted by on July 14, 2010 in Musings

 

Kinless no more.


I’d ask “Horde or Alliance?” but this little baby boy could be most any player in Wintergrasp.

And, yes, I’ve said goodbye to sleep apparently.

 
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Posted by on July 5, 2010 in Musings

 

Pass the fire ants please.

(Ah.  Authenticators in place we’re back in business.)

I was thinking last night as I traversed the dock in Menethil that things weren’t always so tranquil.  That is to say, things weren’t so tranquil on the PvP server I was on when I really got into the game from a social aspect.  Now I ride out on the pier and wait for the boat.  Back then, on the PvP server, you did not know if there was a stealthed rogue waiting for you, and your back to turn.  Or, worse, they were on the boat. Waiting for you, flagged because you’re in the Wetlands, to board.  This was like a luxury liner with botulism on the menu.  This was grounds for panic.  This was where the adrenal glands kicked in.  Senses heightened, blood flowing, you were alive, and wanted to stay alive.

Now, on my RPPvE servers, I know I’m safe until I do something like steal a flame, invade a city, or join a battleground.

See, back on my *first* server, before I’d gone over to the PvP server, they were talking about picnics in the forums.  Between Horde and Alliance.  Out in the barrens.  Or wherever.  In the community forums.  And I was thinking “They just don’t get it.  We’re at War!  This is World of Warcraft for crying out loud.”  Picnics?  PICNICS?  You should be chasing them down, driving their soldiers to destruction, hearing the lamentations of their womenfolk.  Conan got it right!

And things improved in that department when I got over to the PvP server.  And then to the next PvP server where I enjoyed the game to it’s fullest.  The stress of the PvP environment and being with a kick ass group of over 60 players to progression raid the 40-man content.  There were no picnics.  We raided Menethil until the Dishonor rule kicked in.  That was too risky a move to someone interested in gaining rank. One idiot in the raid kills a civilian and those working on ranks were totally screwed.  That killed the organized enmasse city raids for us.  But, lordy, wasn’t it fun to get a 5-man party together and go knock on Aldrasil’s door.  Silly level 2 Night Elves actually attack and get instagibbed.

I eventually left the PvP servers, being 8 hours out of synch with them and playing more with the wife and certainly not wanting or willing to watch the wife ridden down by some level 34 Dwarf in Ashenvale while we’re just trying to play this game.

And, heck, I know I’d not want to be on the receiving end of an endless gankfest.  (Of course I’d also be guilded and have friends to rely on in that case.)

But the concept of some pacifists wanting to have picnics with the Horde still irks me.  That’s not the concept of this game.  It’s about conflict.  Not picnics.  This isn’t a sandbox where you write all your own stories.  There’s a story around us.  Let’s abide.  (And, okay, I admit, Thrall would probably have a picnic with Taretha Foxton, if he still could, poor guy, and with Jaina, since the story there is these two are such friends.  But you and I, we’re soldiers in the ranks.)

That takes us to Shattrath and Dalaran.  These are picnics forced on us.  And the same clowns I mowed down, or who blasted my soul, in Wintergrasp five minutes earlier, are there with me in Dalaran picking mustard flowers, or sitting on mounts outside of our community banks.

I think it’s good news to hear that there won’t be any mamby pamby “neutral” places in Cataclysm.  (No more than already.  And consider Gadgetzan, Everlook, and Booty Bay aren’t neutral in the same sense as Shat and Dal.   You are still flagged and vulnerable on PvP servers.  That edge and sense of conflict still remains in the Goblin towns.)

No more picnics.  Pass the fire ants please.

 
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Posted by on June 27, 2010 in Musings

 

Rehacked

Nice.

Blizzard’s 7 day a week hotline?  It’s been “full queue” every time I tried.  5 minutes after opening shop, on a Sunday morning, and their “on hold” queue is full for the day??  They don’t even bother trying, sending you to the forums direct.  So no talking to a person.

And this 2nd time the hackers added an instant authenticator (iPhone app?) to lock me out permanently.

My own authenticators are coming via ground mail because that’s how they do it now.

I can’t even complain on the forums because I need an authenticator to log on, to access my own account even, and with the hackers locking my account with an authenticator of their own, “So sorry Charlie.”  Sucks being me.

Msaker was who they logged in with and did the robbing.  Six hours ago, wiping me out a second time, in the middle of the night, six hours or 4:30.

What had I done to fix the computers?  I did full scans of both machines.  (First hack was while on my laptop in a hotel room.  Second here at home on my Mac.)  I used SpyBot on my PC laptop to scan for something (nothing), Intego’s VirusBarrier X6 on my mac (also nothing).  I removed all the add-on updaters.  The Mac’s a new machine and had nothing installed on it, nor have I added anything suspect.

I also created a new e-mail and attached the bnet account to it.  And a new password to go along with it.

And I ordered the authenticators.  But ground service isn’t via Flash Gordon so I was stuck.

With impunity they logged on again, my e-mail and password change ignored, and applied an authenticator of their own, and went to town a second time.  With the new gold, probably sold my level 74 Paladin’s crafted armor, again, some gems and eternals, those I’d gathered last week.

However, this was not a “hack worthy” account, not anymore.  And they knew it.  (I’m assuming the same people who got me this time got me last time.)  Now it’s just malicious spite to mess with me.

And, again, it’s just me and the wife.  There are no guildmates involved who may have done this with a borrowed account.  Nobody knows the new password.  Not even the wife.  I simply typed it in.  On clean machines.  What the frick gives???

So, who can suggest a good software keylogger spotter?  (It’s obviously not a hardware USB logger since these are private home machines, and nobody sees the machines but us.)  Spybot-S&D saw nothing (nothing!) on the laptop.  Intego’s VirusBarrier X6 saw nothing on my Mac.  Am I searching for something not even on my machine?  Is Battlenet compromised?

Follow up:

Blizzard did help me on the phone.  20 minute wait, but at least I got someone.  (Thank you!)  Friendly help, offered some advice, helped me reset, and  I got logged back on.

What did they get?  550g my Death Knight managed to gather again doing quests since then.  A bunch of gems I’d gathered and set aside to do my JC dailies.  Saronite Ore I’d gathered together to craft the i178 gear set for my Paladin.  All of it.  Gone.  The Eternals.  The new Titansteel bar to start the weapon and shield crafting.

Apparently, the overseas hackers have access to all the hardware based authenticators they want.  (Stateside distributors, of course.)  You buy on one account, and you can apply it to any account you have access to.  So they got me, the night after I order my own, with their own hardware authenticator.  Insult to injury this time:  They took my Death Knight’s complete T9 kit.  They left him boots and his level 58 gear.  So much for dungeon running to recover the gear.  (I’ll assume they’re reading this and will delete this “rp” kit the next time around.)  They went out of their way to destroy Stormsoul’s pvp shoulders, and the rest of the crafted gear the wife had made him after the first hack.  They actually cleaned out the last of my tokens, something they’d overlooked the first time.  And they sold my level 45 warriors boots, and stripped my 65 rogue of everything non-heirloom, including his epic engineering goggles.  It’s one thing to rob someone, it’s quite another to mock them while doing it.  I guess wasting $6.50 to hack the remains of an account irked them.

So far all of my hardware here scans clean.  I have NO IDEA how they’ve managed to do this.

Follow up to the follow up:

Blizzard and/or the hackers have managed to lock me out of my account yet one more time. I managed to log in long enough earlier today to do some fishing dailies for cash.  Then I logged out for dinner.  Then I tried logging back in to head to Sholazar with the wife to complete the cooking dailies and collect some eggs and I find I’m locked out of the account again.

Then I see Blizzard sent me an e-mail to go online and fill out a form.  Sigh.  Isn’t that causing all the problems in the first place?  Phishing attempts that I’m supposed to ignore?  But I go, figuring WTF and do it.  They respond with a form e-mail saying I should get another e-mail to reset my password.  Except two hours later it’s still not arrived.

So.  I got my account back with Blizzard’s help.  That must have been their right hand.  Because later Blizzard denies me access to my account.  This must be their left hand.  At least I hope it’s Blizzard.  And not a 3rd hack.

If you’ve gone to the technical support forum today it’s alive today with report after report of bogus (i.e. not applied by the owner to their own account) authenticators locking folks out.  That’s way too many people at the same time, in the same style.

 
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Posted by on June 20, 2010 in rants

 

Hacked.

I’ve done nothing wrong.  Trust me, I know what not to do.

I don’t share my password with anybody.  I can spot phishing attacks a mile away. “blizzardhackyouraccount.com” is a dead giveaway that this is a phishing site.

And yet I was hacked.

They left my Pally a mile above Wintergrasp to fall to his death.

They stripped what they could, sold my Edge of Ruin and Titansteel Destroyer on my two DPS, and who knows what else.  They sold the bags, and half the guild bank.  For some reason they’d didn’t decimate my personal bank accounts inventory.  And they took thousands in gold.

Follow on thoughts:

So after notifying the in-game and battle.net gm’s, and having breakfast, I realize something.

This isn’t a big deal.

I’m not raiding.  A guild isn’t dependent on me having wads of gold for consumeables, or being geared right.  Everything I have, I got on my own.  I work on something, I get something. 

Unlike the hackers, gold spammers, and the gold buyers that did this to me, I’ve got a work ethic.  I can recover.  I spent an evening collecting 200+ saronite ore to craft a set of savage saronite gear with all my eternals.  That’s all gone.  The ore, the eternals, everything.  But I’m not gone.  They didn’t delete my mounts.  They didn’t delete my hands.  … My engineer can craft another pick/hammer device and send it to my miner/blacksmith and he can make anything he could make before.  It’s not even a set back, if the time was spent calmly, flying about, collecting virtual things on a virtual character, listening to real music and enjoying being in the environment on the back of a virtual dragon.

I’d probably be happy with just a Worgen, starting out at level 1, and getting to the place where the big dogs run.  It’s the fun, not the stuff.

 
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Posted by on June 12, 2010 in World Of Warcraft

 

Big World, Few Options

My Belf Paladin is leveling via 2 quests.  The Jewelcrafting Daily and the Kalu’ak’s Preparing for the Worst.  Because there’s so much more I need/can do.  (When my wife wants to play her Paladin I return and do quests with her.  We’re heading towards Shadowmoon Valley, the Blood Knight shield quest reward, then Northrend.)

My Human Paladin is now in full Furious PvP gear, having replaced a full set of Deadly PvP gear.  (He’s still a noob in PvP though.) He’s collected some random Ret gear in the harder Heroic 5-mans, but is still carrying the +hit happy Titansteel Destroyer.  He’s in 4/5 of the Tier 9 Prot gear, including Rimefang’s Claw.  He’s got 60 more Badges of Triumph.  Get the helm and complete the set, or collect 15 more and get the higher iLevel version.  That’s my 2 options.  Or I raid.  Then I get Tier 10.  In Tier 10, with access to Tier 11, then I get Tier 11.  Then I await the next expansion and I get Tier 12.  And all people at my level will be in the same two sets of gear.  (All casuals catching up to the next lower tier.  All the crafters in their gear.  The levelers in their heirlooms.)  (And all Tier gear replaced by quest reward greens this fall.)

Is that a lot of options?  No.  It’s very linear.  My blacksmithing armor stopped at iLevel 200 since I don’t raid.  (And there are no plans for weapons with a higher iLevel than 200.)  All the crafting amounted to 2 sets of iLevel 178, for PvP, and a couple of pieces of iLevel 200 epics for PvE.  5-6k gold is nothing for an AH playa, but that’s not me.  I’m lucky to have a few on epic flyers, but I’m not here to finagle cash from the machine to buy gear off the AH crafted by raiders.

While gear seems limited, so too is the progression path.

To get to Northrend, you will go to the Outlands.  Oh, yes, you will.  You will enter the portal or no Level 80 for you.  (Okay, you can PvP in the non-existant 61-70 band to go from 63-68.  Bring bandaids for your eyes though.  And I guess you could do the … wait, there are no dailies in Azeroth.  And you need to be 65 to start the Dalaran crafting dailies.  I suppose you could skip Dalaran if you stayed in Azeroth until 65, and then got ported to Dalaran to do the dailies.)  But, heck, that’s a lot of effort to simply skip a chapter in WoW’s story.

Otherwise, since I’ve been leveling numerous characters with the wife, and wishing to keep the game fresh for her, I’m trying not to repeat paths too often.  We took our Belf Paladins through the Plaguelands to get to 58.  But we had to make a few detours to pick up the last of the xp elsewhere.  We took our Night Elves through Winterspring.  But we wound up in Un’Goro and Silithus anyway, since we had to to get the last of xp, and the Plaguelands too.  It was unavoidable.

I guess it’s my fault in that I want numerous characters, but don’t wish to repeat all this content over and over.

I’m hoping with the remake of Azeroth after the Cataclysm hits, that maybe we’ll see some new leveling paths made available.  That Outlands could be skipped with some alternative questing tracks newly created.

I sincerely hope we aren’t shown the tracks from which we can’t diverge.  Ever.  Level 1 (for the Worgen and Goblins) until Deathwing’s death, one step directly in front of the other.  The World (of Warcraft) is big.  Bring on the options.

 
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Posted by on May 22, 2010 in Musings

 

Seeing Double

Anyone else notice something peculiar lately?

I first noticed it in Dalaran, where the Flight Master at Krasus Landing had a doppelganger standing right next to him.  Or, more correctly, exactly where he was standing, noticeable only when one moved and the other didn’t.

Or, as in the case of the Goblins below, one jumped out and the other stood still.

This is pretty weird.  Both Flight Masters seem operational. So far I’ve noticed this in Dalaran and just now in Un’Goro Crater.

 
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Posted by on May 10, 2010 in Screenshots

 

Three Plus Years

Has it been that long?  Since the Burning Crusade’s release?

Our two Draenei characters are in their 40′s right now.  (Have we been trapped in some mad wizard’s dream, unable to progress?)  Our Blood Elf Paladins are in their 60s and 70s.  Granted we’ve both got a couple of 80s as well.  (Maybe the cryogenic sleep on the flight of the Exodar has left some residual effect on them making them more lethargic than the revenge seeking Blood Elves.)

Three plus years.

As the two of us, our awaken Draenei, swam between the islands off Feralas I remembered it wasn’t forever ago that our two Druids did the same swim.  (The Druids are 80 now.)  (And the screenshot was posted as the header of my old blog on Blogspot, which I left two and half years ago for WordPress. )

And this evening I collected some Thorium and remembered the search for arcane crystals, when having them meant something.  Now they’re effectively vendor trash.

Remember Kargath?  That’s where we Horde amassed on our PvP server before we struck out for Upper Black Rock Spire. And later into Molten Core.  Multiple groups of 40-some people.  What a riot.  That scene will never be repeated again, will it?  I remember the whack-a-mole healing my Shaman did.  I remember the honor grind to maintain my reputation and rank in the battle grounds.  That’s what I did after I wasn’t raiding MC anymore.

I remember way back to my first character, my Night Elf Hunter.  How that cave with the spiders was kind of difficult (it seemed).  The next cave with the Satyr, and all where the Dreamers slept.  Wow, that’s going on five plus years ago.

And here we are, again.  The summer before the expansion hits.

 
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Posted by on May 9, 2010 in Musings

 

Eating Apples. Apple Jacks of goodness!

I’ve been fairly busy lately with a new computer.

Since it had to play World of Warcraft, and I wanted it to be a native Mac version of the game, and since it was replacing a slightly older Gateway FX, I opted for the 27″ quad core 8 GB bad-mamma-jamma version of the iMac.

While I type this World of Warcraft is sitting in a windowed mode while the in-game video I just recorded compresses (in-game).  Now to upload to YouTube and see what we get.

Okay, a few complications.  The whole trip exceeded 10 minutes, and/or, 2GB.  So I trimmed it to start in Dalaran and conclude as I hearth back.  (The trimming and sending to YouTube was done via the QuickTime player directly.  Nice.)

Oh yes, all the while I’ve got a widget called Wallify that is animating my desktop using one of my screen savers.  So my whole desktop is animated.  (Actually a slideshow treated to the “Ken Burns” effect of movement on a stillshot.)

Upload to YouTube taking some 18 minutes.  Seems quicker though.  (And all this via the wireless internet connection this computer has.  I’m doing everything wireless and it’s been absolutely no problems.)

So, while I wait, how’s the switch to the Mac been, game wise?  I’m using the larger iMac keyboard (with the number pad.)  It’s fine.  And I kept my Death Adder Razor mouse, which I use alongside the Magic Mouse (sweet, sweet mouse) for other Apple business.  The mouse tracking seems weird for both.  Too slow, or too twitchy.

(My video is half loaded now.)

Anyway, one very, very noticeable difference graphically, between my old computers GeForce card, and this new one’s ATI, is the richness of the color.  And underwater was spectacular.  Compared to my old machine, which ran graphics on Ultra setting, the Mac’s underwater was freaking incredible.  Which is great news if part of the next expansion expands the game world underwater.

Anyway, here’s that video.  Since it’s at the 2GB limit, it’s surprisingly poor quality.  YouTube says more processing is happening and the image my improve.  Who knows if that’ll be the case.

Anyway, here’s my boring Jewel Crafting daily run, in video for posterity sake.

Edit: That first video was too long.  Here’s a shorter one:

Cenotaph in the sewers of Dalaran.

 
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Posted by on April 25, 2010 in Macintosh Gaming

 
 
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