Welcome To The Snark Side
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Welcome To The Snark Side

Please note that the guild is currently INACTIVE as the members transition over to the sith side.  After spending over a year on the rep side, we are moving for a change of pace.

Snark News
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Guess what, chicken butt?  It’s been a long time since anyone posted.  For those of you following along at home, here’s what’s going on:

Biscotti is the new chief cat herder.  All hail.

We have a joint raid program with Church of Alvis.  Our guilds are very similar in focus and we kept borrowing from each other’s rosters to fill out our respective raids, so we made it official.  Make em buy the cow, no milk for free, amirite?

We are kicking hardmode asses.  In the aforementioned joint raiding program, we’re kicking the heineys of:

  • Explosive Conflict Hard Mode up to and including minefield.  Haven’t gotten much (lizard)face-time on Kephess.
  • Terror from Beyond Hard Mode through council.  We’re thisclose to kicking Operator IX in the lugnuts.

We aren’t closing recruiting.  Although we did bolster our raiding roster through the joint raiding program, a few more would be welcome.  I suppose you could join us via the Church of Alvis side if you’re into that sort of thing.

xoxo, Njessi, former incompetent cat herder (but still incompetent)

F2P – Yes, We’re Still Recruiting (Also, I Said “P”, Heh)
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Just a quick note that yes, we are still accepting apps.  We could use a couple more warm bodies to fill out our roster.

Now that F2P is out, y’all may be coming back to the game.  We honestly don’t care how you pay for the game, whether sub or grab things F2P a la carte, except:

1. We are raiders. If you just want to bum around and not focus on raiding, this is not the place for you.

2. All raiders are expected to show up when they sign up and be able to equip their gear. I do not want to hear “QQ I don’t wanna pay for a whole week of raiding if we’re cancelling Saturday’s raid” or “I will equip it next week, promise.”  NO!  It holds back the team, and we want to progress, dammit.

If you take a few minutes to look around the site, you should have all the information you need about who we are, what our focus is, and how to apply.

Carry on.

How Yngwe Saved SWTOR
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First off, that is mostly a joke, The Old Republic probably does not need saving, and no single idea will make or break the game.  Having said that, I think I have a formula that will: (a) significantly increase cash flow for EA/BW; (b) make players happy and possibly boost subscriptions; and (c) do both of the above without a massive investment of resources, at least not initially.  The idea can be summed up in one word: Space!

Most people would agree that space missions are fairly one-dimensional in TOR right now and far from what everyone wishes they were.  On-rails shooters that make for a nice diversion do not make a lot of people want to subscribe to the game or plunk down money in a cash shop.  We all know that BW has “big plans” for space, but they have been saying that for a long time with nothing much in the way of news.

Now, how cool would it be if you were sitting in Carrick Station browsing the GTN when a fleet-wide announcement is heard “Sith Interceptors spotted in fleet space.  All available pilots are requested at the ready until the threat is fully assessed.”  That may sound cheesy, but I don’t get paid to write dialog.  Anyway, you run to the Jedi Knight hangar, but instead of your Defender, you board an X-wing.  You and thirty other players meet the enemy attack and repel it.  You get a reward and head back to the docking bay.

What needs to happen for the above to work?  I don’t know.  Let me guess – first a new instance needs to be created.  Instead of the Black Hole, it needs to be an instance populated with only two things: space and the models for the fleet.  We know those exist already.  The tricky part is likely having multiple player’s ships in one instance.  We know they can make space instances with lots of moving parts – see any space mission.  We know they have lots of vehicle models.  What we don’t know is if BW can easily drop multiple players into one instance.

Then they need to come up with a way to navigate ships off-rails.  Ultimately, as long as it is fun, the controls don’t have to be as complex as the X-wing games.  Let me control where I go in a simple manner, and then give me something to do.

Assuming all of the above can happen, we have a a fleet-space instance where multiple ships can exist at once.  How do we make it fun, and how does BW make money off of it?  I am going to borrow from two very different games for the answers to those questions.

First, the fun part.  Borrowing from Guild Wars 2, fleet space can have a series of dynamic events that unfold in different sectors.  Lore-wise, we can come up with some hooks that explain the increased activity. As a player, you fly around the fleet, and if you see other players converging on something or something catches your eye, you join in.  Also, remember the original point, while you are out of your ship on the fleet, you can get a call to arms message to join in an event in space.  The other benefit to adding content of this type is BW can start small with a few events and gradually increase.  If it becomes popular, more instances can be created and even, just maybe, some pvp.

Finally, how does BW make money off this?  Remember the X-wing from the example?  That is how.  BW can make a ton of money from players by selling ships.  This may break some people’s immersion, but how many kids are going to be begging their parents to drop $15 so they can show off their Millenium Falcon to their friends.  I have played Super Hero Squad Online with my daughter, and its system of selling heroes would adapt well for this purpose.  In brief, some ships are available for currency that is easily earned in-game, other ships are only available for real money.  In addition, some ships are only available for subscribers.  This system would give everyone, even the truly F2P, some level of choice and customization, but would also provide some strong temptation for people to lay down money.

I don’t know how feasible this is.  In the grand scheme of things, however, it seems like a win-win for EA/BW and players.  It gives us players more variety in game play and something we have been asking for. For BW, it seems as if the return on investment to make this happen could be huge.

Good News, Better News
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Good News: In a stunning turn of events, it is discovered that despite the fact that I am a total jerk, I have friends.  One of them wanted to join the guild with his coworker.  So, yay, we recruited.

Better News: We aren’t closing recruiting and probably still have space for any brave soul who thinks that Snark Side is the place to be.

That is all.  Carry on.

Now On Jedi Covenant, Still Recruiting
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I am sure that you will be simply SHOCKED to learn that in a guild that prioritizes real life, our newest 2 recruits got kidnapped by real life commitments.  Lucky you, their misfortune is your opportunity: there is once again space on our awesome raiding – I mean ops – team.

We have enough people on the roster who are flexible with roles that we can accommodate just about any role or class, as long as you KNOW your role/class.  We are patient people, but seasoned raiders, and this guild isn’t a good fit for someone’s first raiding experience, since we take a lot of “raiding 101″ knowledge for granted.

(Here’s the part where I (mostly) copy paste from our previous recruiting post.)

We are on Jedi Covenant-US and raid Fridays and Saturdays beginning at 9:00pm EST. We raid for three hours with scheduled breaks about every hour. We finish EC on story mode regularly and are working on hard mode EC.

Although we are raiders primarily, we are not crazysauce raiders.  We don’t have attendance requirements or crazy preparation requirements.  We don’t expect you to have the best of the best gear.  What we do expect is a reasonable measure of effort and preparedness so that we can actually get through stuff given our limited time available to raid. You can read more about our raiding program here.

You can find more information about The Snark Side by reading the About PageGeneral Rules, and Raiding Program, and browsing our website and forums. If you are interested in applying to join us, you can find the details on our process here.

We understand that we may have to allow some time for a new recruit to level a character to 50 on Jedi Covenant (although with fewer servers, this is more and more unlikely). We’ve had a few people join at level 1, and level up to 50 from scratch and they were able to successfully enter the raiding program after a short gearing up period.

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments, use the contact form or email me directly at Njessi (at) snarkside (dot) com.  Be afraid that I’m (still) the chief cat herder around here.

Snark Side Seeking A Few Good Raiders. I Mean Ops-ers. Totally Ops.
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UPDATE#2: I lied, we still need people.

Guess what?  After months of being totally full up on snarky people, we have a few people departing for Pandaland.  So we need a few (1 or 2) new warm bodies for our roster. Any classes/roles should be workable, but a tank and/or a ranged DPS would be optimal.

We are on Canderous Ordo-US Jedi Covenant-US and raid Fridays and Saturdays beginning at 9:00pm 9:30pm EST. We raid for three hours with scheduled breaks about every hour. We have finished up EC on story mode a few times now and are looking to dip a toe into hard mode EC before the new raid comes out next month.

Although we are raiders primarily, we are not crazysauce raiders.  We don’t have attendance requirements or crazy preparation requirements.  We don’t expect you to have the best of the best gear.  What we do expect is a reasonable measure of effort and preparedness so that we can actually get through stuff given our limited time available to raid. You can read more about our raiding program here.

You can find more information about The Snark Side by reading the About Page, General Rules, and Raiding Program, and browsing our website and forums. If you are interested in applying to join us, you can find the details on our process here.

We understand that we may have to allow some time for a new recruit to level a character to 50 on Canderous Ordo. We’ve had a few people join at level 1, and level up to 50 from scratch and they were able to successfully enter the raiding program after a short gearing up period.

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments, use the contact form or email me directly at Njessi (at) snarkside (dot) com.  Be afraid that I’m currently the chief cat herder around here.

Groupfinder day one
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I’m kinda new here, but since I made the “brave” decision to try out the new group finder today I get to share it here first.

To start with, the random group finder interface is slightly intimidating.  It is huge and has lots of options.  Luckily everything is nicely self-explanatory.  The main things I think people will end up using this for are the daily flashpoints and story mode operations.  I did try to find a group for the Black Hole dailies using this thing, but it ended up being faster to spam general chat the old fashioned way.

The shiny new group finder.

I checked the box for Tier 1 HM Flashpoints because I wasn’t brave enough to try Lost Island first thing, I clicked “Join Queue” and my group popped up almost instantly.  Yay for being a healer!  My group was already in progress (and the box that popped up did helpfully inform me of that before I decided to accept the group).  I zoned in and discovered I was in Directive 7, and my group hadn’t made it to the first boss yet.  I was informed that their previous healer complained that “the tank kept running out of range” before quitting the group.  All of this felt painfully familiar.  At this point I am seeing no difference from a billion stressful pugs in WoW.

The good news was that there was nothing wrong with the tank.  We plodded along past the first boss with only the minor annoyance of the dps occasionally pulling.  I decided to compliment our tank, because I couldn’t figure out why the old healer had bailed.  Unfortunately either he misinterpreted what I said (I wasn’t being sarcastic random pugtank, you were really doing well!), or randomly quit immediately after my compliment.  Possibly his power went out.  All I know is we then had a 10-15 minute break to wait for a new tank.  We used the time to talk about all the new augment-mania.  We complained at the wait but nobody got bent out of shape about it.  When our new tank finally zoned in we all cheered, and we cleared the rest of the place without incident.

Overall I’m still a bit nervous about the group finder.  I appreciate having a way to get a few extra BH comms per day, but I worry about it turning into the same atmosphere I remember from WoW’s random dungeons.  I enjoy getting to know my groupmates, even in a pug.  I hope that flashpoints don’t turn into silent speed runs punctuated by the occasional “GOGOGO FFS.”  One thing that keeps me optimistic is that at the end of the run you can still add people to your friends list.  Even though we’re on a megaserver now, it is still a community.  It warms my blackened Dark Side V heart to know that I’ll be able to find good tanks or dps again, and maybe that sense of server community will help keep the group finder a pleasant place.

Augment Kits – How the Eff Do They Work?
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OK, it has come to my attention that this is all very confusing.  Let me see if I can break it down for you guys, and I’m doing it here instead of the forums because… have you TRIED using BBCode for a long doodad? Ew.

Starting Assumptions

Let’s forget about augmented crap before 1.3.  It is too confusing.  I’ll talk about any conversions at the end, but for right now, let’s just ASSUME that you have no augmented gear, no augment slots, nothin.  Got it?

What Can I Augment?

Now, you have 14 pieces of gear on you right now.  Some of it is orange, some of it is purple, and some might be blue or green.  You can augment EACH PIECE.  That’s right. Anything of any level that is green or above can be augmented.

Can I augment implants? YES

Can I augment social gear?  YES

Can I augment tier gear and keep the tier bonuses?  YES

How about legacy gear?  YES

How about my alt’s shitty greens? YES

How To Put An Augment Slot On Your Gear

First, get an augment kit.  We will talk about how those are MADE later, but right now let’s just focus on the using of kits.

Second, go to an augment table.  They are definitely on the fleet and in other major cities (i.e. Coruscant).  You can look on the map.

Third, pay the fee.  You will have to pay a fee to add the augment slot to your gear, in addition to just having the kit.  The kit will be consumed.

Augment Kits Have Levels?

Yes.  Remember, the augment kit level is based on the level of the augment you wish to place in the gear, not to the level of the gear.  (In general, you probably won’t bother putting augment slots onto things until you are level 50 anyway, so you will probably just be using the MK-6 (top level) augment kit.)

  • You can put a low level augment in a high level augment slot.  If you have an MK-6 slot on an orange item, you can put a level 1 augment in there or a level 50 augment.
  • You can add a high level augment slot to a low level item.  If you really love your level 11 orange set, you can put an MK-6 slot on it and put level 50 augments in there.
  • You can equip an item that has an MK-6 slot in it even if you are low level, as long as the item is the right level.  However, you may NOT put a level 50 augment in there and expect to equip it if you’re not 50 yet.
  • You cannot put a high level augment into a low level slot.  If you put an MK-3 slot onto an item, you will not be able to put a level 50 augment into that slot regardless of the level of your toon or the level of the item.

As you can see, you will mostly be dealing with adding an MK-6 slot to your end-game gear.

Upgrading The Level Of An Augment Slot

If your gear already has an augment slot, but it is low level, that’s no big deal.  Just pretend it doesn’t have an augment slot at all.  You upgrade an augment slot the same way you would add an augment slot to a piece of gear that didn’t have an augment slot to begin with.  To review:

  • Get a kit of the right level
  • Find a table
  • Pay the fee

Adding the Augment

You do not need a table to add the augment.  Just like mods, the augment is removable.  And remember the augment must be the same level as or a lower level than the augment slot.

  • A level 30 augment may be placed into a MK-6 slot
  • A level 50 augment may not be placed into a MK-3 slot

Crafting All The Things

Now we come to the hard part…

Making Augment Kits

Armormech, Synthweavers, and Armstechs can make augment kits.  You learn the recipes from your skill trainer.

Now what do you NEED for the kits?

Augment Kit Parts

You will need augment kit parts to craft augment kits.  It takes 10 augment kit parts (plus some other crap) to make an augment kit.

You get one augment kit part for each green, blue, or purple crafted item you reverse engineer (within limits, see below).  Realistically, it will be a green item because it is cheaper.

  • The item has to be one capable of proccing an augment slot “naturally”.  This means reverse engineering any piece of armor or weaponry will yield an augment kit part.  Reverse engineering a stim will not.
  • It must be a craftable item.  You cannot reverse engineer drops for augment kit parts.  However, it does not have to be an item YOU crafted.
  • It must be an item of the right level.  If you want to make a MK-6 augment kit that is capable of holding level 50 augments, you will need to be reverse engineering level 49+ crafted items.
  • Even though bioanalysts and cybertechs cannot make armor kits, they can reverse engineer certain of their crafted items for kit parts.  Bio can RE implants; Cyber can RE earpieces.

Other Materials

In addition to augment kit parts, you will need basic scavenging/archaeology mats (depending on whether you are armstech/armormech or synthweaver) and some blue augment parts from slicing.  In general, these materials will be cheap and easy to obtain.

Proccing Augment Slots

You can still proc an augment slot on an item “naturally” if you crit while crafting it.  The level of the augment slot will correspond to the level of the item.  You can upgrade the augment slot if necessary, see above for how.

Making Augments

Augments are made the same way as before.  The demand will be higher so finding mats will be kinda rough.

Grandfathering Gear

What happens to your pre-1.3 gear with augment slots in it?  The augment slot is changed into one of the new “tiered” augment slots and it is the HIGHER of: (1) the level of the item OR (2) the level of the augment currently in the slot.

Examples:

  • I am wearing level 11 pants with a lvl 49 augment in the augment slot.  After 1.3 hit, my pants have an MK-6 augment slot.
  • I have level 40 pants in the bank and they have no augment in them.  After 1.3, those pants have an augment slot around level 40 (so MK-5 maybe).
  • I have level 40 pants in the bank and they have a level 11 augment in them.  After 1.3, my pants still have an MK-5 augment slot.

So the stuff you’re currently wearing should be fine.  Your crap in the bank may not.  Kthx.

A Cease And Desist For The Griefers
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Seriously!  Just because there are a bunch of people on any given destination server that does NOT give anyone the right to be a total asshat.

We transferred because we didn’t see any other viable option in the long term, not because we wanted to be on a super-duper-mega-large-server which, regrettably, contains a substantial number of asshats.  Though they may be in the teeny tiny minority, a teeny tiny minority on such a big server can cause havoc.

This is a PvE server!  We rolled on it because we don’t want to PvP except in designated locations. So I don’t know what is going through their tiny little brains when they:

  • park their flagged butts on top of quest mobs in the hope of getting opposite faction players to inadvertently flag themselves
  • train mobs onto players
  • start healing the quest mobs that opposite faction players are trying to kill

Dear griefers, if you want to engage the opposite faction – go to a battleground.  Or to a PvP server.  Or, even better, STRAIGHT TO HELL.