Tonight will be cloudy with a slight chance of a short queue

When I think of Pinnacle of Storms, the first thing I want to know is if Blizzard REALLY thought that name through.  On the one hand, P.O.S. is perfect because you will die and your gold will disappear and so will your faith in humanity.  On the other, that sort of acronym showing up at the last, supposedly most awesomesauce place is kind of awkward.

Let’s start with Iron Qon, the guy who reminds me of mount collectors.  He has TOO MANY mounts and he can’t choose just one of the bunch, so he shows up with three in his hotkeys.  (He hasn’t learned those fancy macros where you can bind more than one mount to a button.)  Anyhoo, the LFR group helps Qon make a decision by killing the crap out of each one of the elemental Quilen he has.  Eventually, when you run through his entire stable, he’s forced to fight you on foot.  I’m sure he cursed every second of it, like how I do when I really want to fly to avoid aggro because I need to get someplace, but I can’t, because Blizzard wants me to see the world.

Actually As it turns out, you DO need two tanks!  Go figure!

Actually
As it turns out, you DO need two tanks! Go figure!

Here’s the thing, though.  Right before the fight, one of our two tanks dropped.  We queued again to bring in another tank because duh, but one did not appear.  People became impatient and charged Qon JUST BECAUSE.  Unfortunately, the LFR queue thinger stops completely while you are in combat, which meant that finding another tank took even longer, which in turn meant people became even more impatient, even after we wiped.  If you get enough stacks of Determination, it doesn’t matter whether you have two tanks or not LOLRITE?  It was like a circular reference in Excel, just with higher repair costs.

While I’m speaking of going in circles, OH MY GAWD WHY ARE THERE MORE TORNADOS HAAALLPPP!  Oh wait, these just stun you?  I guess that’s fine, then.

Is there a button for this? I'm stuck in a tornado and I can't get out!

Is there a button for this?
I’m stuck in a tornado and I can’t get out!

Mercifully, there was a healer who actually had a decent tank off spec.  He (she?) saved the day by willingly tanking the fight for the first time right then and there, which prevented us from running at Qon endlessly because we were bored.  (Hey guys, has anyone heard of teleporting out and doing other things that allow you to LIVE while we wait?  No?)

Qon drops a ranged weapon.  Of course, it didn’t drop for Therm.  I swear to Gawd I’m going to find a spear or something and be a melee huntard.  See, I even practiced my huntanking:

Sometimes Nothing Makes It Any Better Life just hurts.

Sometimes Nothing Makes It Any Better
Life just hurts.

Next up were the Twin Consorts, who somehow manage to have long, lucious wavy locks despite the fact that they’re made of freaking stone.  I already had lots of issues with these bosses, but I was doing pretty good at keeping all my raging feminist thoughts to myself.  Buuut then we had some  jokes …

No Just no.  No.  Stahp.  Shut up.  Fin.  End.  Over.  STOP.

No
Just no. No. Stahp. Shut up. Fin. End. Over. STOP.

Fortunately for all concerned, a tank pulled at the exact moment a friend called, and DPSing with one hand while holding the phone in the other left very few fingers available for typing in all caps.  Fortunately for ME (since I don’t particularly feel like arguing with almost all of a LFR group), all the capslock I committed was to my party itself, not the instance chat.

It was the easiest fight in the whole joint, which OF COURSE was an opening for this:

For Future Reference Learning from your mistakes is smart.

For Future Reference
Learning from your mistakes is smart.

Har har har.  C’mon, people, I know it’s LFR, but you can do better than that.

Seriously? Flounder is unimpressed.

Seriously?
Flounder is unimpressed.

I was feeling generally irritated by this point, and in addition had been informed by multiple screaming people that Lei Shen or Mr. Thunduar or whatever his name is actually requires coordination and sheeyit that is all but impossible with the random nature of a LFR group.  Has Durumu taught us nothing?  THERE’S NO WAY, THERE’S JUST NO WAY.  So I left.  I’m gonna wait for him to get nerfed, and I’m clearly not the only one with that plan.

Speaking of, I somehow feel as though Pandaland’s point itself got nerfed with this dude and the Zandalari.  Yes, it’s a nice, neat little turn of story for a people who got effed over by the Cataclysm to fight the hell back against the world by resurrecting a dead guy.  It’s just that I read so much crap about how the plot and the bosses of Pandaria were different, because they weren’t some Obvious Other.  No, they were the Sha, and the Sha are actually ourselves, our own negativity and our own overpowering strength.  Face yourself!  And now you get a burly half naked dude with control over thunder?  Bah.

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17 thoughts on “Tonight will be cloudy with a slight chance of a short queue

  1. wowstorylines

    I’m so happy that Auntie Em and Toto don’t live in Azeroth. With all of those tornadoes in there, I’m sure her house would be full of people going WTF, we’re in Kansas now! Let’s just say that your descriptions of these encounters has made me want to “go in there” to see it all for myself even if I die many many times

    Reply
  2. Leit

    So I’m a screaming person now? 😦 Coming soon: my posts, as read by Eminem!

    Got a problem with the characterisation of the twins up there as hypersexualised; Rather, I’d say they’ve got just enough elements to be *creepy as fuck*. Sure, they’ve got knockers and the whole mini-waist deal going, but they also have a severe case of bat-face, and appear to be covered in scales – most obvious in the feet, which are omghorrifying, and incidentally what melee end up looking at for most of the fight. D: And at least if they’re using the draenei skeleton then someone went to the effort of correcting the worst of that spine-snapping level lordosis.

    One minor addendum to the LFR difficulty scale: I play on the EU servers. This means that, just in my battlegroup, we’ve got: czech players, plenty of finns and other assorted scandinavians, portugese, a few french playing outside of their own battlegroup, poles, italians and the occasional dutchman. Some of whom have a good grasp of english, but most of which don’t, and all of which speak different home languages.

    Please, please tell me how we’re supposed to get a group like this organised. It’s like the tower of fucking babel.

    Reply
    1. Leit

      Oh, and brits and the odd african, but we speak colonial and they invented it, so we get along okay. And belgians, but they laugh a lot at everything, including repeated wipes. 😀

      Reply
    2. Prinnie Powah Post author

      The fact that they’re female in a race made up entirely of males is enough to make them hypersexualized, in my opinion. Yeah, there are the “creepy” aspects, enough to identify them as “mogu” … but it doesn’t change the fact that they’re women wearing very freaking little, with The Standard Sexually Attractive Accessory Set of enormous knockers, tiny waist, long legs and long hair.

      Well, you may not have been SCREAMING exactly … but other folks I talked with certainly were. 😀

      Reply
      1. Prinnie Powah Post author

        Also, if they don’t have Obvious Sexual Connotations, why are they consorts? And why is it that they are immediate and obvious targets for boob jokes and prostitute jokes?

        You don’t see anybody telling Iron Qon that his equipment weighs a ton, or that he’s a prostitute for being so easy.

        Reply
        1. Leit

          …you don’t recall (the apparently masculine but who knows with earth elementals) Ozruk and a million associated “break yourself upon my body” jokes? Or comparisons between ICC and a cheap brothel at the end of Wrath? “This boss is so easy we should be paying” isn’t exactly new, and sexual humour slips in pretty much anywhere it finds an opening. (see what I did there? because it’s easy! oh whoops)

          Funny that you should mention skimpy dress, since the average mogu seems to run around in a loincloth and… well, pretty much a loincloth. We’re not exactly talking about the most conservative of dressers, here.

          As for OSC, you’re talking about a race produced in forges and whose reproductive cycle appears to involve swiping other races’ souls to shove into more constructs. It’s an entire race of golems. There might be something under those loincloths, but I don’t really see where anyone’s gonna get “humanoid sexual urges” out of that.

          This is largely fridge logic, and the evidence is pretty damning that someone in the design department has spent a few too many hours on Tumblr. Still… the facts are unfortunate, but characterisation of custom constructs as bodyguards/status symbols to an arrogant ruler does fit.

          Reply
          1. Prinnie Powah Post author

            “…you don’t recall (the apparently masculine but who knows with earth elementals) Ozruk and a million associated “break yourself upon my body” jokes? Or comparisons between ICC and a cheap brothel at the end of Wrath? “This boss is so easy we should be paying” isn’t exactly new, and sexual humour slips in pretty much anywhere it finds an opening. (see what I did there? because it’s easy! oh whoops)”

            I C WAT U DID THAR

            Yeah, I recall ’em. Elementals may not have gender persay, but the way they’re designed/rendered is definitely gendered. Ozruk, since you bring him up, is probably masculine because he has a humanoid male chest structure (if that makes sense) – the way he has pectorals and not a lot of moobs going on makes it pretty clear to me. Also, if you’re an earth elemental and referred to as female, you turn out to be either Therazane or her daughter in Maraudon. Ozruk isn’t obviously fat and hideous and/or wearing a lolzy leather bikini, so I’m going to go with Ozruk being (probably) male, if he identifies or needs a gender at all.

            I guess it really depends on your experiences. I haven’t forgotten the brothel in the Black Temple or in Kara, for that matter, but I can’t recall a single instance where Ozruk’s line caused any LFD party member to say a darn tootin’ thing. Maybe it’s because by the time I started WoW up again, Cata dungeons were old hat? The only time I can ever remember anybody saying anything about Ozruk is when either 1.) he got pulled by accident, or 2.) the tank faced him into the party. (As a side note, I get endless amusement by saying that line in a chipmunk/helium voice. I DON’T KNOW WHY.)

            Here’s the thing – just because it’s everywhere, why should I be comfortable with it? It just seems like in WoW, females get the short end of the design stick (i.e., THEY DON’T EXIST) or the female body/sexuality is all too easily used for a laugh (see: brothels with overly enthusiastic wenches, Therazane being as scary as hale, whatserface in Maraudon, etc). It feels like the design of the twins just BEGS for this sort of response. They COULD have been badass. They COULD have actually had a personality beyond “twins,” “exotic,” “possessions,” etc. (Never mind being more of an actual challenge to defeat.) But they don’t, and this bugs me. The way people react to it (with more lolz) bugs me too. It isn’t funny to me anymore.

            “Funny that you should mention skimpy dress, since the average mogu seems to run around in a loincloth and… well, pretty much a loincloth. We’re not exactly talking about the most conservative of dressers, here.”

            Of course, many mogu wear only loincloths, but I do remember other mogu wearing chest plates, shoulder armor, and capes. Caster-types, for example.

            In any case, your statement and mine beg two related questions:

            1.) If it is normal for mogu to wear only loincloths, there are no other women mogu anywhere ever, and breasts have no sexual connotations whatsoever, then why are the Twins’ breasts covered? Why would mogu care? Do I need to take Western sexual norms to trial and have ’em declared guilty by a jury in order to make it REMOTELY REASONABLE that they are one of the causes behind this design choice?

            2.) If it is normal to dress for one’s occupation (many mogu DO wear more protective crap), and the Twins are bodyguards, why don’t they dress like it? Again, I’m suspecting Western sexual norms had some skin in the game. (C WAT I DID THAR?)

            “As for OSC, you’re talking about a race produced in forges and whose reproductive cycle appears to involve swiping other races’ souls to shove into more constructs. It’s an entire race of golems. There might be something under those loincloths, but I don’t really see where anyone’s gonna get ‘humanoid sexual urges’ out of that.”

            Oh, I’m with you on that. I’m not saying it’s the Mogu themselves or even that Mogu have sexual urges. I’m saying that the human designers effed up here. If Mogu are exactly what you say and have only ever been the male body type – where the eff did these T&A designs come from? Did Lei Shen just go “Oh, you know, Mogu, we’re all so big and burly. Let me balance out our figure types so we’re more representative of all figure types in the world.”

            And honestly, I just flat out hate how they deliberately chose the word “Consort” to describe the Twins. They wanted the royal and the exotic flavor, but sexual connotations are irrevocably tied into the term “Consort.” This is true REGARDLESS of whether or not you claim them to be bodyguards. You can’t expect me to believe that all the royal consorts ever in world history NEVER HAD SEX with their royal partner. In fact that was the POINT of most consorts – marriage for social norms and SEX for producing an heir.

            It makes it SO FREAKING HARD to buy into the whole soul-swapping sexless construct bullshit. Mogu LOOK LIKE MEN. Stone dog construct whatever men, sure, but men with pectorals and a definite lack of bikinis. Now you got sexpot female mogu who were specifically created by a male-themed character and assigned into a sexual role. GREAT. YES. My suspension of disbelief is failing hard. I can’t do it anymore.

            “This is largely fridge logic, and the evidence is pretty damning that someone in the design department has spent a few too many hours on Tumblr. Still… the facts are unfortunate, but characterisation of custom constructs as bodyguards/status symbols to an arrogant ruler does fit.”

            Yeah, it does fit. So does my claim that they’re depictions of Western sexual mores, regardless of stone, scales, flat noses or claws.

            Reply
            1. Leit

              The twins (oh gods, groan, just caught that) aren’t casters – they’re melee fighters, and I can’t think of a melee mogu who showed up in more clothing. Even Lei Shen, Raiden wannabe that he is, dresses in a single shoulderpad and a chainmail nappy when you fight him. Qon wears cycling shorts under his loincloth, but is much the same. Maybe riding stone lion-dogs chafes or something. As for why the twins cover their assets, I’m going to go with trolls.

              No, seriously. Trolls have been around probably since before the titans. They were ancient allies of the Mogu, and Lei Shen could have worked up from a troll template when creating his new flava critters. That’d explain why they’re dressed differently at all, and possibly from whence he plucked a whole fresh gender. It’d certainly explain the slender builds, the overly long limbs, and the extreme gender dimorphism.

              Consort has sexual connotations…? Christ, hollywood strikes again. Go look up Prince Phillip of Edinburgh, husband of the reigning queen of England, whose title at court is ‘Prince Consort’. Go look literally anywhere in european and especially russian history, back beyond BYZANTIUM, and you’ll find examples of a) male consorts and b) consorts that are far more than just fuck puppets. Historically, they’re far more often political allies. Yes, there would likely have been sex too. No, that’s not what the word means.

              Reply
              1. Prinnie Powah Post author

                Okay, trolls. I’ll go with it.

                Let’s see … Consort. Noun. 1.A wife, husband, or companion, in particular the spouse of a reigning monarch.

                Sex is an expected part of the relationship equation in Western culture these days, so yes, it’s part of what that word means, and I’m not being super-Hollywood here. You think I don’t read about history? 😛

                Is it ALL they do? No, of course not. But is it part of the job? Yes, and I think that aspect is important here.

                And DUH there have been male consorts as well. I’m not saying that they’re ALWAYS female, cripes.

                Reply
                1. Leit

                  Except that you were decrying that it’s a step removed from ‘whore’ up there, and now you’re justifying “but spouse means SEX”, which is pretty goddamned thin. You’re placing all of the emphasis where it suits your argument, ignoring any other component of the meaning. I don’t care what you’ve read about history – your argument just tells me you don’t give a damn about context, only pretext. Which means this isn’t a discussion, it’s an extended exercise in justification, where you *know* you’re right and the only point is to keep going until your ego is no longer challenged.

                  Well, I’m no longer interested.

                  Reply
                  1. Prinnie Powah Post author

                    /scratches head

                    I know I’m passionate (overly so perhaps, when am I not?), but I AM trying to be reasonable and engage in a give and take, which is why I responded. Sure, I’m not a perfect debater. You’re quite right in that I see things and can justify to suit – I’m trying to understand what I see in the head I live in.

                    As far as my last comment goes, was more an emotional attempt to say, hey, I’m not full of sheeyit here – I see where you’re coming from, but I want to know that somebody else I talk/chat/type with can see where I’m coming from too, that I’m not just 100% making sheeyit up. So I wanted to be right, yes, but not with the all consuming finality you assume.

                    I’m willing to adjust my thinking – that’s why I’m willing to go sure, trolls, I’ll fly with you on that one and drop the parts of the argument about bewbs and attire. But I haven’t yet seen something that makes my emotional side relinquish the overall fight, which is that there’s something off about the way women are portrayed (or not at all sometimes). In the Twins, I just picked the most recent example that caused me to wonder.

                    I’m NOT interested in going on and on until my point is no longer challenged, and I’m sad you think so. D: If you want to bow out, ok – I just want you to know that I did read and consider what you wrote, and I’m sorry for being the overemotional person here.

                    Reply
                    1. Leit

                      Yeah, that reply from me was also probably a bit harsh, and I know I can get pretty mean if I’m actually arguing something, so I also didn’t want to get to that point. Prefer to stay on good terms, yannow?

                      Being willing to give ground does put you a slot above most people with Strong Viewpoints™ on the intertubes. Here’s what I think is going on: I’m trying to argue that the Twins fit contextually and the sexual cues aren’t neccessarily so. You’re trying to argue that the context itself is flawed and when inspected from the real-world context that players spend their lives in, players are going to draw unfortunate paralells that devalue a real-life gender. It’s like shining a light through glass into water… follow the beam and it ends up somewhere completely different from where you expected to be looking.

                      I’ll concede that the viewpoint of some WoW players isn’t going to gel well with what Blizzard’s trying to do here. If you think you’ve seen misogyny on US servers, you probably have nothing on greeks and italians – it’s a cultural thing. What I don’t want is to see a pretty cool encounter dismissed as a failure for what are effectively political reasons. What I would like is a few thought-provoking cues in the bosses’ background so that we could build on thoughts like ‘maybe they were based on trolls’. At the moment it looks like the Mogu don’t have a culture, just a command structure. Maybe that’s entirely true! It clashes with clues from elsewhere, though.

                      Biggest missed points in the fight: wtf are the celestials doing there, and why couldn’t they maybe give us a little background on what we were fighting, like Cho back in MSV? Even after the fight would have been nice. Probably better, given that people interested in lore could listen without the entire raid needing to sit through another Chosplanation every run.

                    2. Prinnie Powah Post author

                      Biggest missed point in the fight: wait, what? The Celestials were there? /derp

                      I guess the encounter didn’t seem all that cool to me, possibly since I was able to talk on the phone and DPS/move mostly with one hand. It wasn’t great DPS, but I lived. Perhaps when it comes to LFR, I have become too used to sudden, excruciating overkill-type death – did I die in a new and exciting way? Yes? WELL THEN! We have something at the very least attention-grabbing. No? The whole thing gets filed in the back of the mind, under “Ok fine whatever.”

                      This is a tangent (but an interesting one) …

                      In the case of a fictional world such as WoW, you seem to think it better to consider the “context” strictly within the fictional confines of the game, rather than have the “context” be expanded to include the people engaged in making said fiction. While any attempt to understand the motivations of others certainly leads to at least a little distortion, what’s the value gained from separating the work from the people who made it?

                    3. Leit

                      Hmm… if you missed the celestials then it’s little wonder you thought the fight was a little bland.

                      What you – and people complaining that the fight is too easy – probably missed is that when you arrive, the trash is just finishing up the binding of the Jade Dragon into one of the columns in the corners of the room. There’s a column for each celestial. During the fight those columns become active, and a player can click on them to be transported to a sort of spirit realm where there’s a bunch of glowy star-things on the floor. A symbol appears above the player’s head, and if they successfully run a path describing that symbol between the stars, the raid gets a buff. The crane pillar, for example, causes the bosses to take somewhere around 30 million damage (recently nerfed) from a crane stampede.

                      This is an individual responsibility that can be handled by a minority of the raid, happens on a plane where the raid in general won’t see it, and doesn’t even need to be co-ordinated like Ji-kun’s nests. If your raid group didn’t hit the enrage timer, though, then someone was handling the buffs. If you’re in a group that wipes, chances are no-one knows about the pillars. The fight gets much more interesting if you spend it drawing constellations.

                      As for the value gained in separating context from creator… the value is the enjoyment of the content. If I were to tune out any entertainment where I fault the creators’ ignorance or dismissal of principles that I find important then I’d be unable to watch, read or otherwise enjoy much modern entertainment. If I were to fault creators for their personal views then I’d be dismissing brilliant movies, books and music. (excluding cases like Terry Goodkind where the content effectively becomes a medium to push the creator’s agenda.)

                      You read up on history. Do you read fiction? Some genres – science fiction in particular – are renowned for diffracting issues and attitudes from a modern context through the prism of fantasy. This is analogy used as a tool, and skilfully done produces a message that’s undeniably powerful. What I don’t believe is that every work should be approached as analogy. Some – most – are great on their own, with their own world-building and their own identity separate from what we might glimpse of their creators reflected in them. I believe WoW falls into this pool.

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