Apr 3 08

A Simple Scroll..

by Shelbi

I wanted to let you guys know that today is my first official post in WoW Insider. I will be writing for the World of WarCrafts column and will be posting new crafts every Thursday.

If anyone has a special in-game item they’d like to see crafted IRL, let me know and I’ll do my best to “git-r-done.”

Apr 2 08

Tanks but No Tanks

by Jon

I love tanking. I enjoy the challenge and although some may argue that it isn’t a very rewarding venture, I find it quite satisfying. I’m not sure where the following quote originated but I’ve seen it quite a few times on multiple paladin forums and I think it describes the role in a classy (and cheesy) way:

My comrades are my weapons, and I am their shield.
While I draw breath, they shall not perish.
So long as they live, our enemies will fall.
I am defender, protector, guardian.
I am a Paladin.

Yes there are some caveats, soloing is one of them. My lousy dps and extended downtime make solo grinding unbearable. Unless of course I’m doing this:



The other issue I have is that I’m often called upon by others to tank this or that instance and while i’d love to be able to help everyone out (seriously I hate to disappoint even complete strangers and especially fellow guildmates), I just find that I don’t have the time. Weeknights are either spent raiding, preparing for said raiding, or doing dailies (i’d like to have an epic roflcopter one of these days not to mention the steep cost of pots and repair bills). I can get on about twice during the day on weekends while Jon 3.0 goes down for his nap(s), but I don’t commit to anything because when he wakes up and yell’s “daddy!”, the group I’m in is going to be down a tank.

The underlying problem here is that there aren’t enough tanks to go around. We are a rare commodity even with 3 viable tank-capable classes. In the solo-centric pre-endgame of WoW, speccing as tank is just an exercise in masochism. I know that the fact that I reside on a PVP Server doesn’t really help matters, but I really believe that if I were to mosey on over to a PVE or even a RP-PVE realm, that I’d still see the LFG and trade channels lit up w/ LF1M tank for XX then GTG.

Blizzard is clearly aware of this and is developing an entirely new class to try to fill the void. I just hope that they implement the Death Knight in such a way that it doesn’t penalize you for making the choice to roll any of the other tanking classes.They’ve claimed that the DK will be a tank/dps hybrid that uses a zwei-hander instead of sword and board. As long as they retain the solid balance that we currently have between warriors, paladins and druids with the implementation of the Death Knght then there shouldn’t be any issue. If you make the DK too strong as a tank then our other tanks will lose popularity, make them too weak and we’ll be in the same boat we’re in now as people will prefer to spec for dps.

Honestly, I just want an effective way to provide high dps while our talents are tied up in the tanking tree (WTB catform imo).

Mar 31 08

Updates

by Shelbi

I wanted to fill you guys in on a couple of things.. and apologize for not updating lately. I’ve joined the WoWInsider team and will be writing the weekly World of Warcrafts column. Jon and I have also changed guilds, again. We’ve joined Specced for Awesome. Jon convinced them that the existing odd-shaped broccoli tabard needed to go and it was replaced with an uber cute octopus. So I designed a logo for our home page based on our new 8-legged friend.

Mar 18 08

Recipe: Heavy Kodo Stew

by Shelbi

Heavy Kodo Stew (feeds 6)
by: Anna (Feathermoon) Too Many Annas

Ingredients:
1.5 – 2lbs kodo meat, cubed small (if out of Kodo, beef stew meat will work)
1 package mushrooms, chopped
2 cups of chopped carrots
1 small onion, chopped into chunks
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1can condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 package dehydrated beefy onion soup mix
1 Tbsp soothing spices (use 1 Tbsp fresh or 1 tsp dried thyme and parsley, if out)
1/4c whiskey (dry red wine also works)
flour
salt and pepper to taste
1.5 lbs small Runn Tum Tubers (if out of Tubers, use baby red potatoes or noodles)

Directions:
In a 3 QT slow cooker add the onion soup mix, the condensed mushroom soup (do not reconstitute!) and the whiskey – whisk until blended. Dump in the kodo meat, carrots, onion, mushrooms, and garlic. Stir once, cover, and cook on high for 4-6 hours, low for 8-10 hours. About one hour prior to serving, add a handful of flour to thicken if necessary (about 1/8 cup) and give it a good stir.

Quarter and de-eye the tubers and boil in salted water until fork tender. Serve the stew over the tubers.

Mar 14 08

A Darker Lock

by Shelbi

I had a few comments about my other wallpaper being a bit soft – as I expected – and I had 30 mins before tonights Kara run, so I decided to update the colors, for those of you wanting something a bit darker.

Mar 13 08

Warlock Wallpaper

by Shelbi

I made this today. Enjoy.

Mar 13 08

Blogroll Spotlight: Lightning Overload

by Jon

Last week when I updated our blogroll I had originally intended to do a quick blurb on each of the new additions. Problem is that my time was limited and I just didn’t have the opportunity to give each website the attention it deserves.

The same thing goes for the majority of my posts. You’ve probably noticed that it’s been pretty dead around here and it’s due to a lack of time available (with raiding and guild leading and grinding for repair bills =P) to dedicate to the bigger posts. As a result I’ve decide to attempt to release little morsels during the week and hopefully work on something a little more meaty over the weekends.

The first of these bite-sized offerings will be the Blogroll Spotlight. I know it’s a bit of a cliche but something is better than nothing. I plan on probably offering an Featured Addon post as well. If anyone has any suggestions let me know. So with that out of the way, lets get to it.

In terms of blogger representation, my personal observation is that there is a lack of Shaman-love out there. This could be attributed to the fact that prior to TBC, shamans were horde only and so represented a lower number of overall players. Or maybe it’s a personality issue. Is a shamanesque player less likely to blog versus a druid or a hunter (both very high in terms of blogger representation)? Maybe I’m just talking out of my ass but I think it would be interesting to compile some WoW blogger stats to see where the populace stands.

Ligtning Overload: 4-man orc team

Well Boylston over at Lightning Overload makes up for any lack of Shamans elsewhere by blogging about his 4-man elemental shaman team. Yes he’s a multi-boxer. And from the looks of it, a damn good one. He just hit 70 with his 4-man orc army (/congrats) and has started to jump into arenas to start shocking faces.

For those of you that are wondering about the legality of multi-boxing, Belfaire posted up a solid explanation of Blizzard’s stance over on the official forums here.

Mar 8 08

Recipe: Smoked Desert Dumplings

by Shelbi

Smoked Desert Dumplings

One of my favorite things to eat is homemade chicken sandworm n dumplings, but the last time I had them was when my grandmother was still alive. I can’t remember much about the recipe – except using the Pilsbury biscuits – so I had to improvise, but it definitely brought me back.

Ingredients:
6 Chicken Thighs (with Bone and Skin)
2 Cans of Chicken Broth (I would opt for Low Sodium)
1 Can of Cream of Chicken
1 Cup of Water
4 Tablespoons of Butter
2 Teaspoons of Liquid Smoke
1 Teaspoon of Pepper
1/2 Teaspoon of Thyme
1 Can of Pilsbury Buttermilk Biscuits

Directions:
Mix the chicken broth, cream of chicken, water, butter, pepper, thyme and liquid smoke in a large pot. Heat to boiling and stir all ingredients together until the cream of chicken and butter have completely dissolved. Add the chicken thighs and boil at med-high heat for 30 minutes. While this is cooking, break apart each roll into half. When the chicken is cooked, remove from the pot. Add the dumplings and set a timer for 15 minutes. Peel off the meat, discarding the skin and bones. I’m too impatient to wait for it to cool off, so I just used a knife and fork. Leave the soup boiling. Add the meat back whenever you’re finished… it’s ok if the meat is added after the timer for the dumplings has stopped. It’ll need time to cool.


Notes:
This is a fairly quick recipe – great for nights when you want a home cooked meal, but are short on time. You can purchase boneless, skinless chicken instead, but the flavor is better when you cook bone-in. Chicken breast would also be a good option for people who do not like dark meat. Throw in a bag of mixed veggies for added nutrition.

Mar 8 08

Pop-Up Images

by Shelbi

I’ve had a few people ask me how we do the pop-up images on our site. Normally, I would say I’m made of awesome and did it myself, but this time I have to give full credit to the innovative Lokesh Dhakar. He created a wonderful script, called Lightbox2, that allows you to expand images without the pesky use of pop-up windows or having to leave your current page. One effect I like to use, especially for recipes, is the slideshow feature. By adding a simple tag between brackets you can allow the user to click through grouped images. Lokesh has a beautiful site with simple directions that anyone can understand. You can find out more about the script, and download, by clicking here.

I have also been asked how I create the borders around the thumbnail images. I basically add padding and borders to each image and add a class to the div containing my posts. Here’s the CSS code:

.entry img {
border-left: 1px solid #666;
border-top: 1px solid #666;
border-right: 1px solid #222;
border-bottom: 1px solid #222;
background-color: #333;
padding: 2px; }

Here is the HTML code:

<div class=”entry”>
<img src=”yourimage.jpg” />
</div class=”entry”>

I’d also like to note that my code is indented.. but for some reason, I can’t get that to work with wordpress.

Mar 7 08

Blogroll Additions

by Jon

So we had some more inclement weather here: rain, sleet, and snow which is what we refer to as a “Wintery Mix” in these parts. So with the roads nasty and the opening of the schools delayed I had some extra time this morning to finally update the blogroll.

I made a ton of additions and only removed a couple of dead links. After I was done though, our blogroll practically extended past all of our content and pushed our tag cloud and categories into the nether. So I went out and installed Goldfries Random Blogroll Plugin and Website IQ’s Blogroll Page Plugin. These two addons allow me to truncate my blogroll down to a specified number of random links (see sidebar) and then setup a separate page to display the entire collection.

The instructions on each site are pretty straightforward and easy to follow but if you do have any issues I’ll be happy to help out. Just leave a comment on this post or use our contact form.