Archive for February, 2012

This past week I have done two things I have never done before.

1) I applied to a raiding guild for a raid spot.

I’ve been the gospel singer for non guild raids for so long. It seems so odd to actually apply to a guild for the express purpose of raiding. Plus, the guild’s play level and experience is higher than my traditional groups. I think I am capable of doing this, but it is quite a change.

I’m taking myself, at least partially, away from Feathermoon and my social base. I’ve relied on being “Pill” for so long, it is hard to just be myself without having to rely on six years of server history. I’m not knocking Feathermoon here. I really love my home server, but I want a more focused raid in WoW. But booting up WoW has become a chore, not because I don’t like WoW, but because my social base has slowly dwindled.

I miss having everyone around to play. I miss even a little flicker of “hi” from somewhere. Part of this has been my fault. The slow dissolution of the backbone of my RP has been slowly killing me for months. I made writing promised that I could not keep, but I kept acting like all was okay when it really wasn’t. I felt adrift in plans that never came to fruition and trapped by promises I had made to people that have great value to me.

Finally, my Sunday raid started to falter. People left to do things they enjoyed more. Tempers got short, conversations got less productive. And eventually, the thing I knew was going to happen, even if I did not want to admit it, happened. The raid dissolved under its own weight. And I went on twitter to decry my fate.

It’s not the first time, I had looked at the tweets from the Guild Leader of Business Time and wondered. It is, however, the first time I had done so since they went to a “casual” one night a week. Before I had the excuse of time, it would have added three days to my raid schedule. Two of those days were days I already had things scheduled. Curiosity was there, but it was just not feasible. This time, I jumped.

I won’t lie and say that I am completely confident. I believe I am more than capable. I think I play my class well. I do research my class. I do take criticism. I CAN do better than I am doing right now. And, admittedly, I had let some things slide because I could. (Shaman has unenchanted bracers and I am still using the glyph of water shield) At the same time, I am dying to prove that I can do this. And hoping to find another touchbase for WoW things.

2) I confronted one of our tanks about his burnout

Panzercow talks about it from his PoV here. So I’ll tell you my side. I really had no idea he was that burntout. All I knew was that he was constantly harassing me about the raid. He wasn’t joking around so much. He was logging off of vent and WoW without much conversation. Not logging into vent to hang in TOR and generally being a lump.

But a “WTF, Panzer, why you act this way?” Would bring conversations about stress at work, or how he hadn’t really thought about it, or he was tired. No mention of burnout, no mention of not wanting to play.

I take people at their word. I don’t like to guess at what people think. I am notoriously bad at it. I am not good at reading subtle hints.

So, talking to @noxilite and others, it became clear that Panzercow was not feeling the WoW. He confessed to mutual friend that he was feeling burnt out. To which, I responded with typical Pill calm and reasoned logic. “WTF! WHY IS HE STILL PLAYING THEN.” Followed by a string of cursing and my threatening to bring a two by four to a tauren skull and lots of fire was involved as well.

To say the least, this is not how I went to Panzercow. But it was direct:

Itanya: So, I have something to say to you
Linedan: OK
Itanya: If you are feeling that burnt out. Dude, stop playing.

I am a master of the gentle intro, huh?

The other stuff about just showing out of obligation and no love of the game, yeah, I said that. I meant it to. I can replace a tank, if I have to. I can replace anyone if I have to (I don’t always have the will, but I usually can do it)

He was supposed to tell me if he was dropping out immediately. He blogged it up first.

Still lighting him on fire for that.

Anyway, point being that if you are feeling the blehs or the donwannas for week after week. Do yourself and your raid the favor of being honest about it. Everyone has the occasional day of donwanna. But if you ALWAYS feel that way, something is wrong.

And no, I’m not good at taking my own advice people. Bite me.

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My Father,

I will soon return to Drommund Kaas, as you well know. Your gifts and words of praise for my successes here were well welcome. I could have no finer reward then to know that I have pleased you. I have played your holomessage many times. To hear you address me as Lord with such pride. No daughter has been as honored as I to have such a father as you.

I would have waited to convey my gratitude and pleasure until I had returned home, but I understand that you attempted a call to me a few days ago. The communications officer conveyed that I was at a military hearing. Considering the message you left for me on that day, I can only assume that the Ensign gave the impression that I was the subject of the hearing.

Let me assure you, father, that I have done nothing to bring dishonor to myself and thereby to you. The hearing was odd in nature, but as I have told you the Chiss are not like us in most respects. It was called a hearing, but the entire matter was of selected Imperial officers answering the questions of a few Chiss Naval men of high rank, or so I was led to believe.

I told you, briefly, about the strike mission that I had been assigned to. The small Chiss force that accompanied was oddly insular, something I am told is common among those Chiss that spend a great deal of time with just themselves. It appears that a member of that strike force committed some offense that was great enough that it demanded the man be removed from his squadron.

I was asked, at some length, if the man had made unwanted advances towards me. My response, which was laughter, seemed to have caught the Chiss by surprise. Six weeks I spent prowling that ice planet and not one of the four males, let alone the two females, made so much as an lascivious glance in my direction. I had nearly come to believe that the Chiss were opposed to any emotion, holding themselves to the distasteful standards of behavior as the Jedi, until the end of that mission. (As I told you, the forward scout of the squad unexpectedly killed the dark Jedi we had hoped to capture when he called her a stupid alien.)

So let me assure you, once more, that I return to Drommund Kaas with the praises of both Darth Tormen and my own humble Master. My Master has elevated me to Lord, I will be given the title officially the moment I stand before the Dark Council.

In expectation of my elevation and Darth Tormen’s wish to keep me in the military, I have been assigned an attache. You will meet him, Lieutenant Donnel Loren, when I return. I believe that he will please you. He is a man who thinks of the Empire first in most things. You will have another convert to your cause, my father. Perhaps, in time, your ideas will even ferment in the minds of members of the Dark Council.

I cannot wait to be in the jungles of our home again.

Your wisdom always guides me,

Itanya Adonai

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My Father,

I sought and gained apprenticeship with a Lord that has attached himself to Darth Tormen. As I explained in my previous letters, Gharr and I agreed to seek out different masters with different focuses for the moment. Gharr seeks to discover more about sorcery and so he seeks teaching from those with that knowledge.

My master has some modest skill in Lightsaber combat, though I already far exceed him in that. But what the man lacks in martial kill, he makes up for in knowledge of tactics. His knowledge and skills have made him invaluable in Darth Tormen’s constant push towards open war with the Republic. For now, the Dark Council’s obstinate desire to avoid open war has caused Darth Tormen to chase after his desire for conflict to the outer rim worlds. And I and my master have gone with them.

Private communication with Gharr and our assets is difficult, but there is the occasional loyal courier that arrives. It chafes to be so far away from the power base that I have worked so hard to help build. I remind myself that the it is merely a means to an end, but the paranoia that is so ingrained in us from birth rears its ugly head often. It has become another emotion to feed on, to control.

Travelling in the shadow of Darth Tormen has had other benefits other than learning to master my emotions, rather than be mastered by them. Darth Tormen is working in concert with a force from the Chiss Expeditionary Defense Force. The exposure to the reserved blue skined aliens has been intriguing. They are not what I expected, certainly not creatures of overwhelming might or majesty. Unlike many of my fellows, I did not dismiss the aliens at first glance. No matter their distinctive coloring or outward coldness, these people have been the only ones to ally with our Empire.

I have spoken to members of their expeditionary force, the scouts and frontier patrol of their sphere of influence. Not officers or anyone of high importance, but common soldiers. I was amazed to hear some of them speak with a distinct Imperial accent. I had no idea that some Chiss had come to live on Drommund Kaas.

When this small conflict has come to an end, I will return to Gharr with contacts in both the Imperial Military and the Chiss enclave in the Empire. I have issued a challenge to my diminutive ally. I have no doubt that he shall match my success or exceed it. He is a highly driven man. Our alliance will only grow stronger and the Empire will strengthen with it.

Your wisdom continues to guild me,

Itanya Adonai

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