Week 3 – Critiques by Matt and a Special Guest Judge…

This is it. This is the final week. After this, SYTYCB will end. Despite how brilliant everyone’s been, I only have room at the moment for one additional writer. Who will it be?

In addition to the critiques from Wyn and I, there will be a special guest judge adding their 2 cents. The guest judge is a fairly prominent member of the blogging community but I will be withholding their identity. Think of them as the Simon Cowell of blogging.

PS, Wyn’s remarks will come later (depending on level of busy-ness).

Both bloggers have performed exceptionally well to get into the final week.

In any case, on with the show!

Sydera: Troubleshooting Gurtogg Bloodboil: A Healer’s Perspective and Future Overachievers Anonymous: How Achievements Will Rock the Social World of Wrath of the Lich King

Although blogging can be about virtually anything, I’ve tried to set the standard for my blog to be about virtually anything beneficial. It’s a strong principle of mine that a post should contain value and this one post about Bloodboil certainly does that and it does that really well. While it may not be as specific as Bosskillers or a WoWWiki, that’s not really what I’m looking for. The intent here was to see if you could write a piece about something educational that players could potentially benefit form. With Wrath on the eve of debuting, you’ve done that here even though it’s on a boss that most people are getting to or that most people will not be able to get to. You’ve used tables, block quotes, emphasis, and other formatting techniques flawlessly. Both skimmers and readers will be able to read through it and find out what they need. I love the creative use of images and the way this post has been structured.

Your second post I found quite wall of texty. Again, very glad you included emphasis throughout so I could speed read it (lecture and note taking and all). Outgoing links are a plus. All of us should make more of an effort to link outward. You’ve supplied strong arguments on all 4 of your points.

Biggest weakness: Tree.

– Matt

Troubleshooting Gurtogg…

  • Boss strategy overview presented nothing that couldn’t be found just as easily on Bosskillers or other boss strategy resources
  • By the time I got to reading phase 2, I was already snoring
  • Healing tips present no information that a conscientious healer raiding at that level wouldn’t already know
  • Healers that don’t already know the information presented are probably the type to be too lazy to go looking for it anyway
  • Article should’ve presented NEW information: that’s the entire point of a “teaching” post, to show the reader something they didn’t know or hadn’t thought of
  • Should have covered information like: when to pop certain trinkets, when using innervate/shadow fiend would be most appropriate, etc

Future Overachievers…

  • The second article doesn’t present any new information
  • Article appears to simply be an amalgamation of all the viewpoints expressed elsewhere about the new achievement system
  • No new spin or opinion was presented about the new system, and no fresh insight was added to the discussion
  • Article lacked a “summary” for skimmers to get the gist of the article without reading it in it’s entirety and the headings didn’t provide any insight into what stance the article took on the subjects discussed

– The GJ

The Utility of Utility and Death and the Priest

Your post here was aimed at outlining the differences and the benefits that IDS and COH bring to a raid. Your arguments were sound and perfect. You went out of the way providing an example table with numbers that helped underscore the point that you were making. The rule of thumb you wrote at the bottom of the post about which raid makeup would benefit the most is a real eye opener to some Guilds, I would imagine.

The second post consisted of something that I wish I would see happen more often. You publicly disagreed with a blogger. Not only that, you backed up your disagreement with opinion and sound logical reasoning. As a crim student, how can I possibly not admire that? In both posts, excellent use of bolding to emphasize your main point. You did a great job at the bottom summarizing and adding on more ways for readers to participate. A skill that I’ve noticed a few bloggers not having acquired yet is that of reader participation. Give them some room to chime in. If you intentionally cover all the bases, opinions, viewpoints, what else is there left to say? I even gave a lecture about that to Auzara once (and she listened). The points you made, I think, helped encourage that.

Utility of Utility

  • Biggest complaint: The article focuses partly on talents found in the Disc tree, but makes no actual mention of Disc priests (as if they don’t exist)
  • It should be mentioned within the article that, if your guild/raid group has reliable Disc priests, or at least 1 Disc priest that shows up habitually, then the argument is moot: Holy priests can spec out of IDS if they so choose
  • When discussing the effectiveness/usefulness of IDS, stats were mentioned for Holy priests, Resto druids, etc, but again no mention was made of Disc priests (how much more effective would a Disc priest’s heals be with IDS + Power Infusion, for example?)

Death and the Priest

  • Instant bonus points for totally disagreeing with your “boss” so blatantly
  • Images or screenshots within the body of the article would’ve enhanced the points being made
  • The article takes an interesting stance on a subject many can relate to, and forms an emotional connection with the reader (enticing them to comment)
  • The article encourages longer “visits” by referencing an article already on the site (increasing the likelihood that the user will continue reading other articles and/or subscribe via RSS)
  • The article is “skimmer friendly
  • The article presents a good opportunity for a follow up that expands on other moments players encounter while raiding

– The GJ

8 thoughts on “Week 3 – Critiques by Matt and a Special Guest Judge…”

  1. @ GJ — gah, you’re right. It didn’t even occur to me while I was writing the article that I was totally leaving out everything a disc priest brings to the raid with the exception of the buff. I just got so focused on trying to analyze the buff, I didn’t see the forest for the trees. Writing that post broke my brain a bit, and now I /shakesfist at you for making me realize it needs a part 2. XD

  2. Quite honestly, the “Didn’t consider Disc priests” argument will hold water on Wrath, but not in BC. Sure, I’m one of those odd ball priests that raided discipline, but the tree doesn’t have many incentives to bring regularly (coincidentally, one of the fights I’ve heard a Disc priest might shine is Bloodboil).

  3. @GJ: What sort of “new” information is out there for the Gurtogg encounter? Was your beef with the selection of topic? Sydera does present tried-and-true healing techniques, but that just makes the article thorough. I disagreed that the reader would have been bored reading her description. She uses colorful and fun metaphor throughout. All-in-all, it was a much less dry version of a boss guide than one would typically find at Bosskillers et. al.

    Honestly, 95% of the articles here (and on my blog, too) contain bits of information that can be find in other places if the user wants to look. Frankly, I can see why you’ve opted to remain anonymous. Your “critique” was overly judgmental.

    Phaelias last blog post..Night Elf is to Ninja as Tauren is to Giant, Stompy Cheeseburger

  4. Sure, the guy comes out as overly judgmental, but look at what Matts posts up top.
    “Think of them as the Simon Cowell of blogging.”

    If you don’t act like a blatant bitch with that intro, something’s definitely wrong with you.

    ASHs last blog post..The 5th Sunday Report

  5. The one objection I had, personally, with the critique had to do with its anonymity. The GJ has some valid points about my work–after all I’m a new blogger, and I don’t have everything right yet.

    However, the guest judge is quite different from Simon Cowell. The American idol judge’s name, and his experience in the music business, vouch for the veracity of his opinion, even when said opinion seems overly harsh. I can look up his track record and figure out where his criticism is really coming from. That’s the way authority works–it’s based on a person’s identity.

    When a judge is anonymous, how can I learn? My idea when I heard about the guest judge bit was to go to his or her blog after the critique and see what some good model posts would be. I was a little disappointed not to be able to do this.

    Regarding “new information”–I’m not a Blizzard developer, and if I were, I wouldn’t be able to blog about it! Bloggers of necessity must reinterpret information that’s already out there. I also got the feeling that GJ was in a much more hardcore guild than mine–my own experience says that it’s never a bad thing to repeat the basics. In Spanish class, we don’t stop reviewing the present tense just because we also know the past–the same applies with healing technique.

    And finally, in defense of my topics in general, my goal in blogging is to write posts for the kind of reader I am. Creative writing teachers will tell you to write the kind of book that YOU would want to read, and I think that advice applies in the blogosphere as well. I loved the Resto Shaman v. Boss series on Toomanyannas.com, and so for my Gurtogg post, I tried to channel that teaching style. And in defense of my choice of boss, I had the hardest time figuring out a specific strategy for Gurtogg when my guild first hit him a couple of months ago. Most guides, most notoriously Bosskillers, don’t even hint at healing assignments. They merely say really helpful things like, “healers should heal as much as possible.” Well, I wanted a more specific breakdown than that. My healing team actually had a huge argument over the proper spell rotation on Fel Rage targets, and I went to plusheal to resolve the question–and guess what–even there, with experts in attendance, people disagreed.

    I think that guides, in general, are biased towards explanations of tanking and ignore the specific strategies for healers, and to some extent dps as well. I know that I sure could have used a specific, easy-to-read guide for Kael’thas way back when–believe me, I searched around for one, but the options were either too vague or too hard to understand.


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