Black Hole Gear For Sentinels And DPS Guardians

When I first saw the black hole gear, I was pretty damn disappointed.  Some items were an upgrade, a SLIGHT upgrade, over my Rakata stuff.  But in most cases I’d actually LOSE a hefty chunk of strength.  No. Way.

Whilst perusing the black hole stuff over the weekend, trying to see if I was mistaken about the total suckitude, I noticed that the heavy armor DPS set’s chestpiece had significantly better-itemized stats for my class.

Well, as everyone knows, you can just strip the hell out of the mods etc and plop em in a medium armor shell.  HAHA, I thought, I will just buy the heavy armor set.

But no!  Some of the medium armor items are better than their heavy armor counterparts.

TL;DR – For the best armoring, mods, and enhancements for your stuff, you will probably want to mix and match between the foestopper (medium) and pummeler (heavy) sets – and obviously strip the mods on the pieces that aren’t the right armor class.  And then, after you’re all geared up, and just ROLLING in BH comms, you can buy specific pieces just for one mod or enhancement to further tweak your set.

Now, I should warn you, I’ve been trying like a fiend to find an actual GUIDE on the mixing-matching for sentinels.  A friend in-game mentioned such a guide for sages, but I can’t seem to google up a specific BH/Rakata gearing strategy.  So I’m using my own personal judgment here which, of course, is a dangerous thing.

The (Poorly Itemized) Pieces

Foestopper Has Higher Strength

Gloves

Boots.  The foestopper boots are so awesome, I just want to clone all the components and use them for all the slots.  I will have to buy a LOT of these and rip the mods and enhancements out.  Sigh.

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    Search Terms: People Out There Are Weirdos

    People do these search term show-and-tell all the time, and well, I wrestled with Analytics a few days ago, and it tried to bite me.  But today I have better luck.

    Unsurprising Terms

    First, variations of the blog name.

    bsock - well DUH.  I’m surprised that there weren’t more searches for that.

    About Companions

    Akaavi Spar, Akaavi Spar Customization, Akaavi Spar Outfit (and variations thereof)

    Doc Customization, Doc Customization Pictures (+variations)

    Aric Jorgen Romance, Female Trooper Romance,  etc (A lot of these, I guess we have cat lovers in the crowd)

    “am i going to get aric jorgan back” Man… they love that cat.

    Various companion names + romance.  OK, I do tend to talk about this a lot.

    “can you romance raina and kaliyo and stay with kaliyo” - pig

    Searches for specific companion customizations (Scourge, Bowdaar, Risha, but not Corso!)

    “C2-N2 customization vendor” – don’t I wish

    Fashion

    Swtor Fashion, “aesthetics pants” - Hell yeah, aesthetics pants!

    Synthweaving/Armormech Recipes/Schematics, Craftable List, Spreadsheet etc

    Searches for various specific schematics (i.e. “reinforced phobium”)

    Augment recipes, etc about augments (Yes, I wrote about this, but the article is on Snark Side)

    Raiding/Gear/SRS BZNS

    Columi/Rakata set bonuses

    Sentinel, Watchman, Juyo Form, rotations, and variations thereof.  Sorry, folks, I don’t actually tell you HOW to do this.  I’m a combat sentinel!  (And I don’t tell you how to be a combat sentinel either.)

    “how to know if you have upperhand active” – AHA!  I actually had the answer to this one.  See, I’m useful!

    Star Wars Galaxies

    I expected a bit of this because I talk about my SWG background on my “about” page.

    “swg tailor pictures” - ok, this makes total sense

    “how to set up a tailor shop in star wars galaxies” - In case you didn’t get the memo, that shut down in December.

    “was sw galaxies bight than tor” - um, yes? no? what’s a bight?

    Lolwut?

    “sentinel watchman spec is horseshit” - yes, yes it is.

    swtor dark side starved njessi” - I don’t know what this means, but I’m disturbed

    “kidz nd thair dresiz” - are these words?

    “snoo snoo” and “death by snoo snoo” and “shnoo shnoo” – I can just imagine google helpfully asking “did you mean ‘snoo snoo’?” for the person who spelled it wrong.

    “governor saresh flirt” – because, I don’t know about you, but I totally wanted to spend more time on Taris.

    “elara escort” – yeah, in your dreams, buddy

    “akaavi spar naked” – seriously, PERVS! She was in a bikini.

    pictures of gay cabana boy in speedo” and “pool boy dressing up for owner” – right now I really regret that almost a year ago I joked that I wanted to name my companions “pool boy” and “cabana boy” and make them hang out on the ship in speedos whilst crafting.

    “the old republic how to turn off the morality” – How do I turn off morality in real life?

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      Getting Back The Raiding Mojo. I Mean Ops. Totally Ops.

      After a month – yes, you read that right, a MONTH – of being unable to raid due to family obligations, I am putting back on my big girl (hawt) pants, and my new shiny sand people shirt from the world event, and going back into… wherever we’re raiding this weekend (TBD).

      Yes, this picture again. It’s a seriously badass shirt!

      Guys, I’m a little nervous.  But, as you know, nothing helps a case of nerves more than excessive and obsessive preparation.  It’s true.  I read it in a fortune cookie.  So here’s the agenda for the rest of the week:

      • Re-watch all the videos and re-read the strategies so I don’t forget some major thing and insta-kill myself and/or wipe the raid.
      • Do some dailies or flashpoints to remember where all my buttons are… so I don’t do something derpy and insta-kill myself and/or wipe the raid.
      • Try to avoid insta-killing myself and/or wiping the raid, generally.

      But, of course, the above takes discipline.  The devil on my shoulder wants to procrastinate and go fiddle around on my mercenary.  You know, put on the headphones, tune out the world, and just focus on the story (this is my first imp toon, so it really is a new-new story).  But, as I remind myself, if I want to be a vaguely competent raider, and raid with my awesome team, I can’t just give in to my id.  It will be a miserable raid for everyone, especially me, if I’m making us wipe right and left.

      Maybe I’ll find some more videos narrated by dudes with hot accents because I totally learn better from them.  It’s science.

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        Still Waiting for Real Server Transfers

        Let’s translate from Bioware Bullshit into English.  We never had true “server transfers.” They were mergers.  Phased mergers, to be sure, but mergers nonetheless.  Now, the population problem has been fixed, enough dicking around, I want real transfers.

        The whole damn point of server transfers (as opposed to mergers) is to have the option to play with certain specific friends of your choosing, not to join a bunch of random other people who are also transferred to the same place.  I’m mid recruiting for Snark Side, all the while thinking that it would be damn easier if we weren’t limited by the population of our server.  True, it’s a very large server, but that is irrelevant to any given person who is not currently on the server and would have to level up from scratch.  Some of our guildmates who had high level toons on other servers (pre-merger) and were hoping to bring them all together when we got “server transfers” – they’re shit out of luck because those toons ended up transferred (merged) to other servers.

        Recruiting is hard.  Lack of server transfers makes it harder.  Being a GM super sucks.

        Did I mention we’re recruiting?  (Seriously!)

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          A Very Limited Window

          I thought I’d be really happy with the world event.  After all, it was a non-grinding non-dailies sort of affair that was fairly short.  And I was enjoying the hell out of the quests.

          But I’m not happy because I couldn’t finish.

          It’s a 7-day event.  And, a person might say, can you not get online once during that 7-day period? After all, it is not a long event.  Well yes, I managed to get online on Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursday… but, you see, that’s not good enough.  Because the last 3 quests had a staggered release.  So essentially I needed to get online at least once during a specific 4-day period to finish the last quest.  I really thought I could make it, since I could probably squeeze in an hour or two Friday night or Saturday, right?

          That didn’t happen.  What did happen is that my washing machine gave up the ghost in a dramatic fashion a day before I was scheduled to leave on vacation.  There was the repair guy to call out (on the weekend), there were soggy clothes to remove.  Saturday afternoon, my last chance to finish, was spent at the fucking laundromat.  And then, after all that, there was packing.

          A week-long event is not acceptable to a casual player, even if the event doesn’t take that much in-game time to complete.  What is even more unacceptable is the extremely crunched window to finish up that last quest to complete the event.

          It’s not the rewards.  Fuck the rewards.  It’s that it’s new content!  We haven’t had new content in a while, seriously.  And I don’t get to complete all the new content that I am paying for because I missed a 4-day window.

          For a game that is going F2P to appeal to a more casual audience, they are really alienating casual players right about now.

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            Haiku Monday: Karagga

            In the rancor pit
            Droids and a metal spider
            Give me the damn hat

            I promise I won’t wear it with THAT outfit.

             

            (Yes, I’m on vacation.  In fact, I’ve just scheduled this fluff post for while I’m away so y’all won’t miss me too much.  Seriously.)

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              Timing Fail

              Man, this sucks.  I mean, I’m going on vacation so YAY… but…

              The world event!  It’s only a week long!  I’m not going to finish it!

              And, more importantly, Snark Side is recruiting but I’m going to be totally out of game for a week!  I’ll be answering recruit questions from my phone…

              … from the pool…

              … with a beer…

              Oh wait, those were my vacations before I had a kid.  Now it’s MOMMY SPLASH.

              See you guys on the other side.

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                Scavenger Hunting. FYI, I Fail.

                Unlike last time, I’m actually doing this world event.  Well as much as I can before I go on vacation.  I’m a little pissed off that it’s gated because then I definitely won’t finish by the time I’m leaving – and it will probably be over when I get back in a week.

                Anyway, Dulfy’s guide in hand, I set out to find all the things.

                The intrepid Zabrak does… something.

                The most fun was when I was following some dude… people who spacebar through the cut scenes would be totally screwed in trying to find this guy.  Oh, wait, there are guides.  And I used them because, let’s be honest, I suck at directions.

                So there he goes… UP…

                Um… crap.  I alt tab out to Dulfy’s guide which cheerfully says:

                So the bounty hunter climbed up..See those crates there? Take a climb!

                Take a CLIMB?  As if it’s that easy for someone so jumping-impaired as myself.  Gulp…

                Yes, there are 5 jumps. The horror.

                I did manage to vault up there and while it was not on my first… or seventh… try, I didn’t have to yell downstairs “Hey Honey, can you make this jump for me?” so I was not too embarrassed.  Until I saw some chirpy asshole scoot up there on his first try like he was a monkey.  Haet.

                As for rewards, I wasn’t too impressed.  I don’t need bowcastthingys, I don’t give a crap about mounts or pets, and fashion-wise I already have a sand people outfit.

                I was so wrong to dismiss the sand people outfit!  It may be the same model as the original, but it color matches so much better.  Less chiquita banana, more badassery.  And on the republic side, seeing a color, a real color that isn’t brown or tan or brownish tan, is pretty nice.

                Totally badass, amirite?

                The main thing I got to do during this event that I don’t normally do is that, whilst searching for random crates, I wandered around on my speeder through various levels and eventually bumped into the imperial side of things.  “Bumped into” being code for “ahhhh holy shit they are AFTER ME!!”

                How are you liking the world event?

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                  Theoretical DPS

                  Things I don’t miss about WOW:

                  • Meters
                  • Cookie cutter specs, where if you don’t use it, you FAIL
                  • Highest theoretical DPS

                  Seriously, I may kick in the crotch the next person who talks about highest theoretical DPS.  This concept is ridiculous because it assumes we’re all automatons (or 22 year olds with the reflexes of a coked-out ferret) and will PERFECTLY execute whatever it is.  We will never have lag.  We will never miss a debuff dropping off.  We will never mismanage our mana/energy/photontorpedoes and run out at a crucial moment.  Nope.  PERFECT.

                  Well that’s just BULLSHIT.  I’m a person, not a theory.  And things just don’t work that way.  I’m not saying that I need an easier rotation and that I will automatically do better with that, because I’m incapable of the theoretical DPS perfection.  I’m saying that different people click with different specs and styles.  Something that is difficult for you might be easy for me, and vice versa.

                  Let me give you an example: in WoW, cat DPS is generally considered to be difficult.  There are bleeds to manage and energy and combo points and self-buffs and debuffs and… well you get the idea.  However, cat and I always clicked.  When I read my first cat raiding guide, upon hitting max level (I think it was 80 at the time), I was just like… oh, I’m already doing all those things, carry on.  To me, it seemed so natural.  My GM at the time called me a kitteh savant.

                  Now, shadow priesting?  Forget it.  In fact, forget anything where I have to string together casts.  Even if it’s a 3 button rotation, I will fuck it up.  I can’t shadow priest. I can’t boomkin.  I can’t elemental shaman.  Just terrible.

                  Enter SWTOR.  And as I’m twirling around through the levels with my Sentinel, it is known that Watchman DPS is the raiding spec.  Mmkay…  So I watchmanned and I was OK.  It wasn’t that hard to grasp, but at the same time, I didn’t feel any sort of love.

                  Due to a bug, I ended up respeccing Combat to try it and, holy shit, it was love.  It was like with cat – I didn’t have to really concentrate on where I was in my rotation, I just KNEW.  When something interrupted me or knocked me back, I got right back on track and didn’t flail around like LOLWUT?  And I kicked some major ass, much more than with Watchman.  Sure, watchman may have higher theoretical DPS, but in my hands, Combat has way higher dps than Watchman.

                  I was reminded of this phenomenon when I was trying (and failing) to do dailies with my smuggler.  I had specced scrapper and I was just SUCKING at it.  Dying all the time.  It felt like I was hitting the mobs with a wet napkin.  My companion tank was constantly whining that he was going to dieeeeee – and this was AFTER I re-geared both Corso and Bowdaar.  And I couldn’t use a non-tank companion because I needed to be behind whatever-it-is, so I needed a tank to take up the mob’s attention.  I always found myself out of buttons to press because it seemed like everything was on cooldown.  I just hated it.

                  So fuck it, I switched to Dirty Fighting.  Now, I know that dirty fighting is better for crowds, is more mobile, and doesn’t rely on positional attacks, so it’s already innately much more suited for dailies… but it wasn’t just that.  It felt right in a way that scrapper did not.  I was specced that way for about 5 minutes and I was already easily adapting to things like not having a gap closer or dealing with groups of various compositions.  It was easy.  There was no fumbling and pausing like “um, what do I do next?” Oh, and I didn’t die.  I pwned.

                  The point of my dumb story is that if you are sucking at something or you just hate it, ignore the guides and just damn well try something else.  It might work!

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