I ain’t afraid of no ghost.

It turns out that insomnia and the new LFD tool are uniquely suited to one another. Instead of using Warcraft as a glorified chat engine, standing in a capital city and staring at the mailbox, I can actually while away some time until I’m tired enough to sleep.

Scarlet Monastery GY – Hello? Is this thing on?

My first pug of the evening was accompanied by a feeling of great hope. Could it be possible, I thought, that I have out-leveled interminable Gnomeregan runs?  Yes, the random dungeon finder answered. A thousand times yes!

Now I can spend my time doing the same Scarlet Monastery run over and over again instead. This was another ‘silent one.’ I had a panick-y moment during the initial SM GY; I realized, thanks to the warlock… that it seemed like my Flash of Light was not healing. A few confused and muddled moments later and I realized it was healing – it was just healing ME. My clever keybound macro was too smart for its own good, and it interprets /cast Flash of Light as /cast Flash of Light on the pally, and not the life-tapping warlock who probably deserves to die anyhow.

I need to digress a moment to talk about the lifetap thing. What is with warlocks who do this? I’m giving most warlocks the benefit of the doubt here, I haven’t run across too many yet in my LFDing. At 80, I’ve met ‘locks who are unobtrusive in their lifetapping. I’m genial about tossing them a HoT. Here, warlock, do borrow my mana. My leaves can handle it. My mana is infinite, please partake of it. This is as a resto druid. I’m no longer playing a resto druid, and I’m also not level 80. THIS warlock drained herself dry casting in one pull, meanwhile, you can imagine that futile FoL spam (due to dealing with my broken macro) left my mana gasping, I hoped the tank would actually stop when I asked him, and sat to drink. The tank was a pally, and he sat to drink too. Everyone sat to drink! We had a little party there among the corpses, just drinking away.

The warlock? She lifetapped until she’d nearly killed herself, and then she just stood there.

What did I do? I don’t have a HoT. I couldn’t even get all my mana back in the time I had to drink. The tank jumped up and flailed off in some opposite direction, and I followed him. The last glimpse of her I had – she was bandaging. Which brings her up slightly in my estimation since she clearly recognized that she was on her own with her LT habit. What, warlock, you’re too good to drink like the rest of us? You thought you’d save some time? Or you took a look at my mana bar, and mistakenly thought that it was your bitch.

Apart from the warlock, the whole group was fairly forgettable, because nobody spoke beyond ‘hello.’ I should note here that I’ve been thinking about this post that Elnia wrote over at Pink Pigtail Inn in which she compares the new LFG tool to pornography. It’s a thought-provoking read which I won’t attempt to summarize here. I wonder if it holds true at all levels? What about if you are trying to get to know the people in your group? My biggest regret about the cross-server system is that I keep meeting people who seem really nice but have no method of adding them to my friends list or similar, and likely will never encounter them again. So to me the impersonal nature is a major drawback, but is it still casual thrill-seeking? And if so, am I a sort of pugging porn star?

With that in mind, I made a concerted effort to engage my next random SM group. It took them a little while to open up, but we did get to chatting. Someone remarked that it was quite a competent group, and I said that it was the tank who was making me happy. I’m not even sure that the tank (a warrior) even really knew what I was talking about. Early on in the instance he’d been LoSing some groups around the corner. And he said he was going to do it! And called it by name!

I said, “It’s so nice to have a tank who really knows what he is doing. You said ‘LoS pull’ and my heart went pitter-patter.”

His response: “Huh?” I think he was too busy concentrating on tanking to pay too much attention. Anyway, we all had fun and everyone wanted to queue for another together, so we did, and had a quick and painless Stockades run. I think the tank may have queued us for it specifically, because of the weird level-diversity glitch with a pre-existing group. I’m at the point where Stocks doesn’t grant much, XP-wise, but it was a fun run regardless. The tank had just re-rolled Alliance and this was his first tanking character, but he’d obviously been paying attention to other tanks because he was one of the best I’ve encountered playing Vid thus far.

After that group broke up, I was relatively close to 31 and so I queued again. Once more, SM Graveyard, this time with a spastic paladin tank who rushed in and aggroed the entire first room past the hallway. Chaos ensued, and like the sick person I am, I was pleased. “Now THIS is a group that’ll give me something to write about,” I enthused in guild. It’s possible I have a sickness.

Anyway, we all died horribly and we were running back, when one guy says “Rez please.” I immediately think of Tam’s refusal to rez one such asshat, but SM GY is so short, and my convictions are weak. The time it would take me to belabour the point would be at least half the length of the instance. Paralyzed by indecision, I don’t respond. The tank is a pally, after all. He could also rez. And I didn’t say I wouldn’t rez him, either. But little do I know, in a twist of delicious fate, the problem is going to take care of itself.

“Rez please!” he insists. I’ve just run back into the instance and made it to the room full of Scarlets we didn’t kill. A charming gnome skeleton decorates the ground.

“You released,” I tell him. “Only your skeleton is here. I can’t rez you.”

But apparently, meantime, he’s been trying to run back. “Why u guys close the door??” he says.

I say nothing.

“**** you closed the door, I can’t get in!” he goes on. Nobody says anything in party chat. I’m killing myself laughing, silently. He’s got to be trying to get into one of the other instances in SM…the ones that HAVE doors, some of them locked.

“You guys are ***holes, why u close door?!” Mister Rez Me has finally had enough, and he quits the group in a fit, presumably to wander Tirisfal as a ghost, forever. I think it’s a fitting end.

The rest of the run really isn’t great, because we’re talking about a paladin who is ‘tanking’ with a massive 2-hander equipped. We finish and I’m still snickering to myself, but only one measly bar away from hitting 31. I queue one more time, and I’m in a group with not only the same not-so-great pally tank, but also the warlock from before. (She barely life-taps, though, have I won some sort of silent power struggle?) I hit 31 and decide it’s time to stop tempting fate, since clearly the late-night crowd is making for slim pug pickings.

I’m looking forward to the next chance I get to pug – hopefully I’ll be into the rest of the SM instances soon! I really enjoy them all, and although Graveyard is fast and easy, after 4x runs per session it’s going to get old fast.

Ambriel (aforementioned holy paladin from my guild) says he wouldn’t make a very good blogger re: pugs because he would just say, “The run was fine. The end.” I could summarize this evening’s pugs in a similar fashion, perhaps a haiku:

pug kills many ghosts

sadly, the door eludes you

next time run instead!

13 responses to “I ain’t afraid of no ghost.

  1. I’ve got a 32 pally and a 32 shadow priest that are both at the same point. Finally past Gnomeregan, but stuck in what feels like an endless SM:GY loop. I queue the pally as tank/dps even though she is ret, and nearly always end up tanking. The spriest goes heals/dps, and so far it’s been 50/50 what role she’ll actually fill. I haven’t had an overly bad pugs with them – the biggest issue I run into is with my pally and the dps all running ahead and not letting me properly tank. We survive though.

    About the warlock and her Life Tap: if she’s doing it while she is casting, it’s possible that she has it glyphed, which makes it a valuable part of a ‘lock’s rotation. But at that level I’m going to hazard a guess and say “not likely” and that she was just using it to refill her mana bar, especially since she apparently learned from the mistake later (lol!)

    With my 80 ‘lock, I LT a lot during combat, and maybe once before a pull, but I rarely let my health dip below 75% when I do that, because of reactions exactly like yours. That and I main a Disc priest, and it pisses me off when ‘locks treat my mana bar like their personal buffet table. If I tell them they can LT all they want, that’s one thing. But doing it without consideration is just aggravating.

    Anyway, I love reading your pugging series since I am in relatively the same boat. Keep it up! 🙂

  2. Ah Life Tap something that gives us Warlock’s a bad name, when I enter an instance now I have to announce at the start of the run my intentions to life tap down to 50% life during the run and that he healer shouldn’t waste mana on me as I’ll be draining life to make up the odds.

    What surprises me though is how many healers out there in PUG land don’t know about life tap and what it does.

    Keep up the good work Pugging Pally

  3. On the warlock thing, warlock spell costs and such are balanced around lifetap, so while it sucks (have healed a low level run with not one, but TWO lifetapping locks) it’s necessary to keep them from spending half the run drinking. Of course if it puts a strain on the healer, they should wisen up, but this kind of.. reactive common sense isn’t common, ironically!

    Pugging Pornstar Pally. New title?

  4. Ahhh I know the feeling when Gnomer no longer pops and you get SM GY instead. I was just writing about it myself a few days back. Now I’ve moved on to SM Lib popping up and I’ve done RFD once.

    I absolutely love your story of the Gnome trying to get back into the dungeon. 🙂

  5. Hey! Easy on us poor Warlocks! I agree with Decina- at lower levels I would spam it to a point, but would not expect a heal. Maybe square it with the Warlock beforehand?

    Another very entertaining post btw!

  6. hmmmm now its starting to make sense! I swear I only life tap very inconspicuosly when i’m dungeoning however I never get healed by the healers 😦 I assumed that at that low level they are new healers and can only really focus on the one target -the tank. Perhaps I had it wrong perhaps baby warlocks like me have a bad name 😦

  7. As a former warlock I must say lifetap is an integral part of our class, however there’s no need to be an asshat about it. A warlock should continously tap during the encounter, not wait until you’re running on fumes and then almost kill yourself tapping.

    My opinion, which I seem to share with other experienced (ex)warlocks is to simply ignore the warlock, we generate that life soon enough anyway.

    My policy when healing is to toss a small HoT in the warlocks general direction *IF* I can afford it and the warlock is being nice about it. Mr.tap-a-lot who you aptly described in your post simply won’t get any heals, even during combat. They usually get the hint 🙂

  8. As a paladin, I found that when healing pugs the next two things saved my mana more than anything:

    1) Cast Judgement of Light on the mob least likely to be killed first – trust me, that will be what the DPS is hitting on and god they need that healing.

    2) I use mouse-over macros to heal units. So /cast [target=mouseover] Flash of Light. That way I simply hover over the unitframe of the afflicted (warlock) and hit my FoL button.

    Other nice things I learned was using a taunt to kill running mobs (it actually deals quite a bit of damage) and regular, repeated uses of Hand of Salvation on myself.

    I now dual-specced Tank/Healer for the ultimate masochistic trip – I can’t wait to see the Uldamar login screen pop up. ^_^

  9. Inspired by your blog I decided to try your trick on a … WARLOCK!

    Regarding the Lifetap thing:
    Yes it is a MUST to avoid drinking every pull. The only way I can keep my mana bar up.
    But I don’t ever want a heal unless I’m < 50% (I can heal myself via Drain Life).

    I have enough trouble playing a new class so I've yet to have the long drawn out discussion of:
    "Dear Healer, I'm a masochist … I mean I'm a warlock and I'm going to hurt… I mean trade health for mana a lot. Don't mind me since I can also heal myself … I mean suck the lifeforce out of … I mean wait! I seem to have lost track of which voice is which."
    You can seee how annoying it would be to explain that healer after healer.

  10. Pingback: Dungeon Finder Gooooo! « Snake in the Grass

  11. After Hots/Dots directed me to your little adventure. I decided to join the bandwagon so to speak. Pala tank and Resto shaman enjoying instances I missed out the first time around on my warlock and druid.

    If the endless Gnomeregan / SM:GY was / is driving you around the bend wait till the endless re-run of Day of the Triffids which is Maraudon -orange…….. When do I get to leave!

  12. Pingback: The Odyssey « Pugging Pally

  13. Pingback: Dungeon Finder Gooooo! | Reality AFK

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