4 Aug

Things have been kind of quiet around here lately, for one big important reason:

I decided to take a break from raiding.

The circumstances surrounding my most recent post really tipped the scale in that direction.  When I say “tipped the scale,” I mean that there were other things already on the scale that were making it lean in a particular direction.  This just ended up being the deciding factor.

For the most part, everything has been entirely amicable.  There were no hard feelings between myself and my group (other than the initial furor by some over the post itself).  I’m still in my guild and I’m under the impression that I could come back and raid at any time (if not with my current group then with another one that falls under our “umbrella,” of sorts). 

It’s been a lot easier to go without raiding than I thought.  I don’t even think I’ve logged into the game since I made the decision to take a break.  I feel overwhelmingly disappointed with the current state of things.  I feel like “Bring the player, not the class” has turned into “Bring the cooldown, not the player.” 

I feel that we have fallen into a state of convincing ourselves that we need certain things to succeed, when that wasn’t always the case.  I feel that this has created a demand or a sense of obligation that everyone needs or deserves a cooldown, which I’m sorry to say isn’t true.  I was against shamans receiving Spirit Link Totem and I can’t say that I sympathized with druids who insisted they needed a cooldown, too.  This is what the game has turned into.  It has turned into taking classes who were strong and are strong and convincing them that they aren’t or that they are nothing without a desired cooldown.

I have been spending most of my time cooking real meals, going to Zumba classes twice a week, and getting addicted to various TV shows on Netflix.  I have been spending quite a bit of time playing Rift and getting familiar with how the end game works and trying to decide if I want to get involved with that at all.  I have entertained the idea of coming back to WoW, either by raiding with a different set of people or choosing a different spec that’s outside of my comfort zone (like the deeply misunderstood Atonement spec).  Most likely I would remain holy.  I don’t really have a plan right now and it feels good to be able to say that.  I’m just kind of putzing around and having an absolute blast doing so.

So in closing, I’m still here.  The blog is still here.  Ophelie and I are recording a new episode of the Double O Podcast this weekend, so the podcast is still here.  I don’t really know where I’m headed, but hopefully a few of you will still be willing to take the journey with me and see where I end up.

Thanks for stopping by!


39 Responses to “Crutch”

  1. Psynister August 4, 2011 at 8:49 am #

    I’ve got a nice, comfy window seat over here. Take us where you will, I’m just enjoying the ride.

    • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 9:00 am #

      Just make sure you go before we leave the house. I don’t want to have to make any additional stops.


    • Dave Gregory August 4, 2011 at 5:01 pm #

      I got dibs on the back seat. And dont ask about the “oregano” in my backpack.. I’ll blow out the window.

      • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 5:37 pm #

        Deal. As long as you don’t ask about that mysterious stain between the seats.

  2. Arazu August 4, 2011 at 9:24 am #

    My perspective here is as someone who has never done a 25 of any kind in Cataclysm, so I hope you understand why I might be confused. Don’t 25mans have like 5-10 raid cooldowns already?

    The gigantic uproar about raid cooldowns last tier pretty much came from exclusively 10mans. When only three specs in the game had them, we managed to have 2 raid cooldowns only when the exact right people logged on, and that made certain heroic-10s unfairly difficult. Now we have 5 raid cooldowns in our 10man, meaning not everyone in our group who has one needs to be in the raid when we want to fight something that has spellburst.

    I haven’t raided 25s in about a year now, but I’m trying to imagine what a successful raid comp looks like. Let’s say 1 Disc, 1 Hpriest, 1 Rshaman, 1 Rdruid, 2 Hpal, 2 dpswarriors, 1 warrior tank, 1 paladin tank. By my count, that’s eight raid CDs, plus a tranq, plus a tree, plus 2 DH, plus 6 externals. Unless you’re overlapping two to three cooldowns at a time, what on earth do you absolutely NEED all of that for? That’s enough cooldowns to fire one on every single Sinestra breath indefinitely, or keep THREE cooldowns up for just about the entirety of an Alysrazor P4. Sure most 25mans probably don’t have that exact raid comp, but that amount of raid CDs looks like absolute overkill.

    “Bring the cooldown, not the player” was a very real thing last tier, and I definitely complained about it. 25mans however did not seem to have that issue.

    • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 9:39 am #

      Hi Arazu,

      First off, like you mentioned it depends on your comp. The raid groups I have run with in Cataclysm so far have not been nearly as balanced. There’s nothing wrong with that and everyone performed phenomenally well, considering. But with that lack of variety comes an increased need for the cooldowns that the raid could have available.

      I also believe a lot of the demand for cooldowns is more of a perceived need than an actual one. I don’t think it’s the healers themselves that are saying “Gosh, I think I need this spell” or “I really could be doing more healing” it comes from outside influences and that kind of thing is mighty hard to tune out.

      • Arazu August 4, 2011 at 10:03 am #

        Hi friend,

        Breaks are a good thing, but I hope you don’t give up on wow. I feel like I could be comfortable with as little as 2 raid cooldowns for everything we do except Heroic Beth, which is pretty nightmarish damage on 10. Tier 12 has less spellburst in general, so it would appear raid cooldowns as a whole are less important, but I do think they’re still really quite important in those instances where they matter. Just not uh… ten of them.

        I’ve taken breaks lots of times in the past. With casual heroic-10s being really fun and the Cataclysm raids being so good though, I haven’t had a break now since t10. When I wasn’t enjoying raiding so much though, either because of the content or the people, yeah I definitely took breaks.

        It’s really hard sometimes to find a place to fit in where you can play exactly how you want to play. I hope you find something fun.

  3. Zelmaru August 4, 2011 at 9:27 am #

    There is a middle ground, thankfully, between what you’re describing (bring the cooldown) and not raiding at all. More casual raid teams just kinda bring who shows up and don’t require… well anything. Now that kind of pace may be frustrating to you – and not-raiding might be a better solution.

    • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 9:34 am #

      Like I said, there were other things that led me to take a break. I’ve never really had one before. I’ve raided while on vacations, I’ve raided while I was sick. I would like to think I’ve been a pretty committed raider (all spec swapping emo aside).

      I’ve healed through three expansions and never really taken time off. I enjoy my alts a lot and I have been having fun with them than my main lately. This just added to that.

      I’m excited about the possibility of playing around in the PTR, when 4.3 becomes available. Other than that, I’m fine skipping most of Firelands and seeing what else is out there, if anything.

      Besides, I can’t imagine many guilds would be falling all over themselves to take me in!


  4. Suzushiiro August 4, 2011 at 9:42 am #

    People in my raid were wanting me to go Disco for barrier last night on H-Beth. I didn’t, not because of some stubborn refusal to play a spec I didn’t like but because I considered Holy to be stronger for the situation due to the higher sustained hps- in a situation like Beth phase 2 stronger hps for the whole second phase is worth more than stronger hps for 10 seconds of it.

    Speaking personally, I love Disc when I’m playing it because its toolkit is better suited to the fight than Holy and hate it when I’m playing it because while Holy is more suited to the encounter I need to be a bubble bitch.

    • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 9:52 am #

      Not to re-hash the last post too much, but I wasn’t refusing to do it just because. I was in a situation that was similar to yours. I did not feel that it was necessary for the encounter at hand. If I felt that it were (and I would like to think I’m self-aware enough to recognize that and if my performance is faltering), I would have gladly been the first one to say “I’m not cutting it as ___ . Let me fix that.”

      In your situation, you were given the choice to not only voice your opinion that what you felt you were doing was better, but it also sounds like you were given the chance to show that and keep doing what you were doing. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to have much say in the matter. That’s where most of my unhappiness came from.

  5. Alethiar August 4, 2011 at 9:44 am #

    It sounds like you have made the right decision, and that you’re having a blast doing other things. Good for you!

    Your points about the current negatives in WoW are all valid, and well made. Hopefully things will change, but I think Blizzard have taken things down a very undesirable path, and there may be no way back. I hope I’m wrong!

    I really hope you continue having fun with other interests, and that Rift offers you an enjoyable way to spend your time. I can only imagine that playing with Ava would be “interesting”.

    I hope you and Ophelie continue to produce the Double O podcast, even if it’s on a reduced frequency. This is one listener who would tune in just to listen to you both discuss what’s been going on in your lives.

    Yay for Oestrus finding things that make her happy, even if they’re not WoW ^.-

    • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 9:56 am #

      I have always looked up to Ava and had a tremendous amount of respect for her. Even though I’m just starting to really get to know her, I’ve always felt like she is one of the few people that I’ve met in this game who really understands me and can understand how I operate. She also lives incredibly close to me, so I’ll have to muster up a trip to Chicago in the future and pay her a visit. Wouldn’t that be an adventure?!

      In terms of the Double O Podcast, we’re still recording every 2 weeks. That hasn’t changed. We did have some delays earlier in the season, due to Ophelie’s bus tour and other real life concerns. I feel like that’s winding down and we should be back to our regular schedule.

      Thanks for the love, sir!

  6. clra2 August 4, 2011 at 9:53 am #

    Taking a break from wow can only be a good thing. You’ll probably find something more worth your time. Or after a while you’ll just miss Aezoroth and return but when you return, everything will feel fresh again. I’m currently on my second extended break from wow and have been occupying myself with sc2 vods, Taiwanese dramas, and various games by Valve. I am also eagerly awaiting the release of swtor and/or diablo 3 =D. I don’t know if I’m ever going to return to wow but man… I have this severe itch to pvp on my priest T.T

  7. juulna August 4, 2011 at 10:46 am #

    Go you! I have been toying with the idea of a break, but for multiple reasons am not. However, I imagine that getting to put around feels amazing! *wishes she was done with uni*

    Keep up what makes things fun, and let us know what endgame Rift is like! I’m interested 🙂

    • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 10:53 am #

      I’m convinced I need to do an “Idiot’s Guide to Rift” or something. That game has a *lot* going on!

      I was sitting in Vent last night and my cleric just turned 50 (which is the max level). There was all this talk of “lures” and “daily rifts” and “expert rifts.” All I could do was spin the camera around my character and play with my wardrobe while all this was happening.

      It’s very humbling and sort of refreshing to be the total noob for a change and to need to ask so many questions just to get by.

      • juulna August 4, 2011 at 11:00 am #

        I would LOVE that. I know my BF would love that too, as he feels that WoW is getting kind of stale, like I do. But there’s so much invested, and still some stuff that we get a lot of enjoyment out of. Blizzard’s expansion policy just kinda… sucks. Very static. Great article about it over at Ragin Monkey:

        I don’t know how to make a spiffy link, sorry!

        But I’ve heard Rift is great, and I’m trying to not learn anything specific in case I do play, so that I can increase the awesomeness. I just want to know if the endgame is any good, if it’s like WoW, etc…

        Keep enjoying yourself 🙂

        • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 12:14 pm #

          I haven’t quit WoW, by any stretch just yet. I have a lot invested in it, too. But I would like to think that I could make lightning strike twice and if I could see everything I’ve seen in my WoW career, maybe I could do it someplace else. I try not to think of that as a limitation.

          Then there’s quitting completely, as opposed to either not raiding or raiding less and just alting. There’s so many ways to classify how we play the game. I don’t think it has to be that final, unless you really are at that point where you get nothing from the game anymore and you’re just done. Then I could think you could say things like that.

          I’ll check out your link and let you know my thoughts on that!

          • juulna August 4, 2011 at 12:35 pm #

            Yeah, I agree on the ‘different levels of quitting’ idea. I get lots out of the game still, but it just messes with lots that I wonder if it’s even worth it? Ah well, that’s to decide at another time!

            I ❤ alting though. min and maxing toons as much as I can, even without raiding… just fun. And exploring new things – yet more and more things are not new. Meh. I think I'm getting jaded. I'm too young for this!

  8. Rhoelyn August 4, 2011 at 10:58 am #

    How will you defend the capabilities of Holy Priests everywhere if you can’t rock people’s worlds in raid?

    I’m sorry that you felt the need for a break, but I’m glad you’re enjoying yourself.

    • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 12:12 pm #

      You do bring up a good point. I’m still keeping up with changes to our class and spec, things of that nature. There are plenty of strategy guides on how to heal the fights already out there or videos, even. I don’t really feel I can bring anything new to the table on those.

      I do plan on participating in the PTR, when 4.3 arrives there and I’ll report other things, as they happen. Right now, not much is happening anyway. If I had to take a break, I feel now is a good time.

  9. friarkel August 4, 2011 at 1:33 pm #

    After 5 years of Wow and another burnout related to guild issues, I now RIFT. This game has returned the joy I used to have with WoW. The “pick up” open world raids are fun. Leveling is fast. Low population servers mean I get to know a lot of “not in my guild” players. 5 specs per toon is also very cool. My cleric has a ranged dps build, 3 heal builds and a tank spec. Check it out! IMO

    • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 5:36 pm #

      I think I’ll enjoy Rift more once I know what everything does or where I’m going in the game. I’m kind of overwhelmed at the moment and I don’t like feeling like I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m sort of being carried and led around, told what to do. And that’s fine, to a certain degree. But I do pride myself on being self-sufficient, so I want to understand my surroundings and such. Once I get more familiar with that and the lingo I might be in a better place to decide if I want to stick with Rift or go back to WoW.

      For the most part, it’s a beautiful game (I can’t say that enough) and I think a lot of the mechanics are really well tuned and smooth. It has the potential to take me away for good, but not quite yet.

  10. Carlos August 4, 2011 at 10:25 pm #

    We all need breaks every once in a while, I think you definitely deserve one.

    As long as you don’t leave Twitter, I’m fine 😉

    • Oestrus August 4, 2011 at 10:46 pm #

      Oh, I know who this is!

      Yes, certainly not leaving the Twitterz. Have no fear!


  11. Marza August 5, 2011 at 7:40 am #

    Did it ever occur to you that people don’t expect you to do things because they perceive them as ‘NEEDED’ as you seem to think, but that it’s because they don’t like raiding with someone who isn’t willing to do what is better?

    Obviously it’s fully possible to do most things as holy, but the situations you’ve always cited in the replies to the last blog post and this one are ridiculous, Disc is clearly superior, whether it’s necessary or not. You admit that you like to go against the grain and try to stand out, but you seem to not realize that there are 30 specs in a game with 10 million players. You are not a special snowflake, when you refuse to do what is better for your group it actually just makes you a cripple. People don’t get mad at you because they think they NEED you to respec, but because if you did it could turn a loss into a win, and your stubborn attitude is holding everyone back. It’s incredibly selfish.

    You claim to play to raid, but in reality you play because you like the attention of your blog and twitter feed. I wonder if you won’t discover the same sort of issues in Rift (Oh but I LIKE PLAYING A SENTINEL, I won’t switch to a Warden or a Purifier based spec!) in your quest for being ‘unique’ and ‘standing out’ in a genre where that might as well be impossible.

    Get over yourself, for your own sake. And while we’re at it, the fact that you thought Leap of Faith was a terrible ability speaks volumes (no, it doesn’t promote bad play. Not putting abilities on bars because of arrogance and pride is what promotes bad play).

    • Papapaint August 5, 2011 at 8:25 am #

      Who shit in your coffee this morning?

    • Oestrus August 5, 2011 at 8:26 am #

      If you’re going to come to the playground and play, you better be prepared to play. Clearly, you’re not.

      Game on.

      First off, I’ve actually been raiding since Vanilla. I didn’t start blogging until mid to late Wrath and I didn’t have a Twitter account until shortly before Cataclysm came out. So to say that I’ve spent my raiding career raiding solely to feed my blog and my Twitter feed is ridiculous and I would have expected better from someone who took the time to leave a comment such as this on my page.

      Again, if you had done your homework you would know that I have a Warden spec and Druid spec and I’ll probably fill up my other 3 roles with other specs, too. You don’t know what I’m going to do because you’re not me and you obviously don’t know me that well to predict otherwise. But it’s cute that you think you do.

      And yes, Leap of Faith is a terrible ability. Sort of like your ability to think your words actually have any weight to them and that you actually know what you’re talking about. You could also stand to be more prompt next time. It’s been a little over a week since I wrote that initial post and you’re just now coming out of the woodwork to flame me? Please. I’ve had better.

      While we’re on the subject of getting over yourself, try leaving a real e-mail address or something where you can be identified. I’m pretty sure nobody who reads my blog gives a shit about who you are and you’re probably not that swell to make hiding your identity a priority.

      Thanks for playing.

      • juulna August 5, 2011 at 8:29 am #


        You go girl!

      • Alethiar August 5, 2011 at 10:04 am #

        Now, THAT, is a put down! Nicely handled, and well written.

  12. Derevka August 5, 2011 at 8:35 am #

    Taking a break is always a good option, particularly if the game is taking the fun out of it. Enjoy RIFT if you enjoy it. Enjoy Alts if you enjoy it. You’ll be around— we all know it 🙂

    • Oestrus August 5, 2011 at 8:38 am #

      It’s fun! That’s all I can really say about it. It’s nice to be a total fish out of water and run with a whole different group of people and see loot I’ve never seen before, etc. It’s fresh and it’s pretty to look at.


      • Derevka August 5, 2011 at 8:52 am #

        Yeah, I’ve been thinking about reactivating my account to just fuck around on it. I think im in my 20s still. Shrug. My account was hacked back when they didn’t have limits on the number of guesses, and brute force attacks worked; i got it restored but never did anything after that.

        • Oestrus August 5, 2011 at 8:57 am #

          Ava’s been pretty good about getting people from the blogosphere and Twitter into the game and into the guild. I know Tyben has a low level alt and a guy named Rilgon (he seems nice) has a max level cleric. I got to run some dungeons with him last night. A few other people you may or may not know also popped on and have toons.

          Tomaj is there, too. It’s a weird reunion of sorts!

  13. Ophelie August 5, 2011 at 10:06 am #

    When they’re needed, breaks from raiding are awesome! It’s incredible how shiny the real world (and sometimes other games) get.

    Speaking of real world, we need to talk sometime! Outside of podcast stuff. It’s been FOREVER! ❤

    • Oestrus August 5, 2011 at 10:48 am #

      I’m low on funds until pay day, so I’ll probably be staying in most of the weekend. Feel free to give me a call on Skype and we can gossip for a while. I would love to hear from you, too!

  14. Ceraphus August 5, 2011 at 10:37 pm #

    I continuously read about and talk to friends in hardcore / progression guilds. Many of those folks also seem to be post college, getting more involved in their careers, dating, even families who feel the need to take a break from wow, or quit all together. I cant help that it’s because at a certain stage in your life you not need a second job but a game to have fun with and enjoy. This may not be the case with you.

    But my guild, admittedly a casual raiding one at that has recently taken in several previously more progression minded folks, looking to slow down a bit. Maybe you need a similar option?

    • Arazu August 6, 2011 at 4:26 am #

      Casual raiding is a pretty righteous way to go. Some casual guilds even manage to get a whole lot done in their short time raiding each week. My casual guild notched a US-11th kill in heroic Firelands, and we got Dragonslayer and the Glory meta while they were current.

      You don’t have to be crazy hardcore to be good at the game. If you did want to play harder though, you don’t have to limit yourself to one MMO. Plenty of raiding guilds have players who also play Rift outside of raid times or whatever. Paragon and EJ both have several main raiders who spend way more time in EVE Online than they do Warcraft (they’re even in the same spaceguild).


  1. A Change of Pace | - August 13, 2011

    […] different opinions on the whole “bring the CD not the player” debate, check out what Oestrus and Tomaj have to say on the topic. I think they both bring up some valuable points. Share […]

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