Saturday, 10 December 2011

Tyrael's charger: now you see it, now you don't

I've never had any problems with Blizzard's GMs, or the in-game support that's been provided to me.  I'm unfailingly polite in my (rare) GM tickets, and always, but always have thanked whichever GM that dealt with my issue.  It's one of the things I've always thought Blizzard have had in their favour - their customer service, in my experience, has been excellent. 

Imagine my disappointment now.  I signed up a few weeks ago for the Annual Pass, mainly because I *really* wanted Tyrael's Charger for my paladin (and my other belfs...), but also because I figured that I'll still be playing WoW in a year, so it was win/win.  When 4.3 hit, my mount was duly delivered to all my characters and I really loved it.  It felt like the right mount for my paladin, but it worked well with some of my other characters as well.  Plus I could take screenies like this:

So I was a happy gamer.  A few days ago, I logged into my account, and my mounts had vanished, from all my characters.  Gone, removed, no longer there.  I wrote a polite ticket then had a quick shufti on the forums - sure enough, it wasn't just me that this had happened to.  Three days later, I repeat that:  three days later, I finally got a response to my ticket, saying that I had failed to reply to the email they had sent about my Parental Controls.  Those would be the Parental Controls that I had only set up because of the Real ID fiasco on Sven's advice.  However, a while ago I disabled it because I thought it would be nice to have the option to catch up with  a few people there.

I'd gathered, from the forums, that this was the standard response, so I wrote politely back, saying that a) I don't have Parental Controls active, and b) that I haven't had an email from them about the Annual Pass.  Could they now kindly find a solution, and restore my mounts please?  I've just had a response to this which is the exact same response.  Word for word.  Nice copy and paste job there, folks.  Thanks for that.  I have pointed this out, in another ticket...  And now I wait, with breath that really cannot be described as 'bated'...

To say that I'm unamused is putting it mildly.  I had to activate the damn Parental Controls in the first place because of the RealID privacy issue. They are no longer active.  I haven't had an email from Blizzard (and just for the record, Himself, who does still have active Parental Controls replied to the email and still doesn't have an active Annual Pass, weeks later!) anyway.  They would also like me to provide them with a scanned copy of my identification, such as my passport!  Can I just ask you to take a moment to decide whether, with all the security breaches from games companies in recent months, if you would happily scan a crucial document, such as your passport, then email it to a company who, allegedly, has reasonable cyber-security (at present anyway... But then again, I'd hazard that Sony also thought that... )

I'm incredibly disappointed.  I understand that there can be occasional issues when new things (such as the Annual Pass) go live, but the customer service that I have experienced on this occasion, has been shabby.  I thought Blizzard were better than this.   

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Responding in kind

Dear Niae

Thank you for your recent letter, and the charming pictures you enclosed.

I get that you want to ditch mining, I really, do, but sweetie, you're a paladin. Not a druid, not a shaman, not, heaven forbid, a *whispers* Tauren.  A Sin'Dorei paladin. It's not really even appropriate that you're wafting around flower-picking is it?  Be thankful that I didn't follow through with my plan to make you into a blacksmith...

And, whilst we're on the subject of paying your way, who decided that they wanted a ret spec after seeing this?  Because, sweetie, even if you get geared enough to try that stuff, I'm not sure I'm good enough to help you out! So you got your ret spec and the armour didn't you?  And then what did you decide?  That actually you felt quite squishy as ret and that you probably did almost as much damage as holy, but without losing half your health in every fight? I think I got that right...

I know right now, you don't think that you'll want to fly even faster, but trust me sweetie, you will in a bit.  And learning alchemy means a lot of time spent riding round all the places that you're I'm bored with, just to gather a metric f*ck tonne of plants.  I'd understand if you would consent to doing archeology, because then eventually we might have a shot at this but as you insist on grumbling that surveying is nearly as tedious as mining, I'm guessing you're not going to go for that.

You're doing really well, sweetie.  You're getting much more skilled and experienced.  Why, just today you were rewarded for the assistance you provided to the Horde in Dragonblight and I'm very proud of you.  Keep that sort of work up, and I'll seriously consider procuring alchemy training for you.

See you soon!

When your alts start writing to you... you have a problem.

Dear Sally

Hullo, it's Niae here.  Niae?  The Sin'Dorei paladin that you're currently playing through Northrend. I've been trying to explain some things to you, but you don't seem to be taking it on board, so I thought I'd write to you and see if that helped.

Firstly, stop dragging me back to Orgrimmar.  I like Dalaran.  It's virtually deserted now, you know.  If (for some unfathomable reason) you need me to get back to the orc city quickly, there is a perfectly good portal that the Sunreavers have gone to a lot of effort to maintain.  There are a number of perfectly acceptable hostelries for me to rest in, ok The Filthy Animal might not be at the top of my list, but the chambers in the Legerdemain Lounge are very acceptable. I know that I'm supposed to be paying my own way (more on this later) but Reginald Arcfire has stopped being quite so uppity about his clientèle and now non-engineers can use him to auction off their goods as well.

As I've mentioned the paying my way thing, can I ask you (again) to re-consider your view about me needing to have two gathering professions?  You know how much pleasure I get from herb gathering but the same cannot be said for mining.  I know you think that I need to earn as much as possible, so when I'm finally skilled enough to be sent to Hyjal or the Twilight Highlands I'll be able to fly faster but really, I'd rather fly slower and be allowed to train as an alchemist.  I'm fed up with swinging  a pick. I've been spending some time in the alchemy shop in Dalaran, the Agronomical Apothecary,  and I'm enclosing some pictures I took.  I hope they persuade you...

Ice-thorn growing indoors!
Look how many potions I could learn to make.
See how many books they have? 
Tiger-lillies growing in the middle of a city!
And Talandra's Rose!
The Agronomical Apothecary