PvE · Roleplay

Levelling in the new Azeroth

I really should be focusing on my Horde toons, as I’m going to end up levelling my Worgen druid through the Alliance quests, but I’ve found myself attached to levelling my little Gnome priest, Chromatic.

Now, Mattie started as my little gnome rogue on Feathermoon, that I rolled to attend an RP event that I ended up being unable to attend. She wasn’t your usual gnome, with the cute hairstyles and the brightly coloured hair – just that really short hairstyle in brown. But then when I was going to be rolling my Gnome priest, I thought “Well, I like Mattie. Maybe she got religion!” And thus you get Chromatic of Apotheosis.

Most of you who know me fairly well know I am a VERY slow leveller. So I’m very pleased that she dinged 23 tonight. I was going to level her shadow (because I never learn *coughRetpallies*), but a guildie said I should level Disc, so I’m trying it.

Holy. Crap. This is FUN! I didn’t know soloing as a healing-specced squishy could BE so fun! And granted it’s probably a lot the new way talents and stuff are designed, but DAYUM! And then the QUESTING! I left the Gnome/Dwarf area after I dinged 10 and went to Westfall, because I always had a soft spot for the Defias and I wanted to see what had been done to the place – my shammy can level through the Dwarven areas. And just… oh MAN! It’s so EPIC! Not to mention there seems to be a much better sense of cohesion in each zone, and they actually SEND YOU to the next zone so you don’t have to worry about where to go next, and it’s just… oh my GOD.

I haven’t done as much Hordeside, but the Troll starting area? Amazing. Broke me a little

Spoilers for Westfall, Redridge, and Echo Isles lay ahead – read at your own risk! Continue reading “Levelling in the new Azeroth”

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PvE · Roleplay

Raiding, from a lore perspective

And by lore, I mean my personal character lore. See, about a month ago Alas celebrated her one-year blogiversary, and she handed out prompts to any blogger who asked. I liked mine:

What does it mean to your character when she steps into a raid? What goes through her mind as she faces the big baddies of Azeroth?

But the thing was… I didn’t really know. I was on the cusp of my first-ever ICC run, and everything else I’d done had been… outdated, or a little outdated and on my DK. I didn’t really now what Lis would think.

ICC isn’t… hugely big to her. Well, it is – she’s a paladin who was first inducted into the Silver Hand when they needed more paladins because of Arthas’ attack on Lordaeron. The Scourge killed many people she knew and cared about, and it was her first real battlefield experience, and those memories will always haunt her to some extent. But Icecrown is about doing her duty, doing what she must do to protect the people she loves, avenge the people she’s lost. Gerk, Burr, other nameless friends and comrades-in-arms. When Arthas is dead, she won’t feel satisfaction, she’ll just feel… relief, and weariness, and a bit of sadness – he wasn’t all that older than her, after all, and he’d started out with good intentions.

So, okay, that’s something, but it’s… very small, and didn’t seem to do the prompt justice, in my opinion, so I didn’t write it. And then this weekend, Lis and I stepped into Ulduar.

Ulduar was different. Ulduar was something that Lis volunteered for, in a much more definite way. Lis had a duty to be part of the attack on the Citadel, at least in her eyes. She had no such duty when it came to the reclamation of Ulduar. It was simply something that was important to her. It was a chance to… maybe find a way to really connect with being a Dwarf, since she was pretty much stuck that way. She spent a lot of time in Storm Peaks, searching for and helping Brann Bronzebeard, learning about the titans, becoming a… a helper to Thorim, if not a friend. Seeing Loken’s betrayal and destroying him for it. And finally, finally, stepping into the main part of Ulduar to help take it back from… whatever was there. She was part of a small strike team, and they… oh, they were heroes.

She won’t ever consider herself a hero for what she did elsewhere, but considering the scope of what she was a part of in Ulduar… she can’t really deny it should someone call her a hero for that, even if she’ll never really feel comfortable with it. Facing Yogg-Saron was the most terrifying thing she’d ever experienced, as throughout the battle she could feel her mind and her sanity starting to slip away from her. But that just made her all the more determined to not succumb. Engaging Algalon, fighting to save the world, that wasn’t frightening. It made her angry. Of course their actions were illogical, coming to fight one of the maker’s own agents and knowing they would quite possibly die horribly, but to lie down and simply accept their destruction would have been even more illogical – when you have life, the only logical thing to do when threatened is to fight to protect that life.

It wasn’t anything she could’ve put into words, at least at that moment, but that was the driving thought behind her anger. And then she and nine of her companions… saved the world.

And I know when she goes to face Deathwing, it’ll be personal – full of rage and hate and grief and the quest for vengeance. I can’t wait to see how she views the other raids of Cata.

General · PvE

[Insert appropriately emo lyrics here]

Tonight was… meh.

Okay, to be perfectly clear, this was not because the instances weren’t interesting and cool (they were) or because my guildies weren’t awesome (they were). It was because for some reason, I was just completely off my game today. (What follows is over 1.2k words of me rambling and being slightly emo. It is not important, feel free to skip it if you so choose.) Continue reading “[Insert appropriately emo lyrics here]”

PvE

One more oughta do it…

No in-depth like last night, it’s too late and I’m bushed – work in the AM, too. BUT.

We are one achieve away from getting our 10-man drakes. We are two kills away from Starcaller. After last night’s troubles with Freya, we watched vids before tonight’s raid, ran in, and one-shot her. It was a bit messy, but we did it. Firefighter took a bit longer, but once we got the hang of it, it was just a matter of making sure we knew where everyone was at any given time and avoiding fire. Velax (sp?) was a joke, really, so very easy – I know it’s that we outgear this content by a significant amount, but still. We wiped on Yogg for a good long chunk before deciding it was too late to really focus on him – so we got the Iron Dwarf, Medium Rare and A Quick Shave achieves off Razorscale, who we’d left up.

Two notable bugs: Auriyala had, for some reason, re-spawned. So we went for it and got the other achieve off her, Nine Lives. Kinda hax for one lockout. ;) And the second was the damn train to Mimiron’s lab: IT WOULD NOT TAKE ME. I’d get on just fine with everyone else, and then when it would leave the station… I’d be left standing in mid-air. I don’t even know. I ended up just getting a ‘lock portal and putting in a ticket.

I have also dubbed this ragtag little 10-man (including Shadow, our warrior tank, who couldn’t make it tonight at the last minute) Your Mom is Bugged. It just fits us.

I don’t know if I’m allowed to feel proud of everyone, as I’m the nubbiest raider in the group, but I do. These are my kids in my raid, and… okay, tonight I was making these half-hearted little attempts to play RL, I have to admit. ^^;; I can’t provide the strats, but I actually made leadership decisions and tried to help the raid as much as I could with my limited leadership skills. Even though Ose and Euphie and Jay were giving the strats, it felt more like my raid tonight, as opposed to “a raid I’m in that I happened to organize and am no longer in charge of.” Now, for all I know, it was extremely annoying for everyone else, me being all “In Charge” sometimes when I’m kind of clueless. But this is my baby. Getting the drake and title on Monday (because we WILL get them, dammit) is going to be even better than getting it with guildies in some general Ulduar achieve/title run. We might outgear the content, thus requiring less skill and coordination than it did when Ulduar was current content, but it’s still difficult sometimes, as evidenced by the fact that we didn’t just stroll in and mop the place in hardmodes yesterday. This is just a random little 10-man of guildies, but dammit, we’re kicking ass and we’re having fun.

My drake and title are going to be the best things I have in the game – drops and other achieves and titles? Yeah, they’ll be cool. I’ll be psyched if (WHEN) we get Kingslayer tomorrow night with the guild. But Kingslayer isn’t the one I’m going to wear for the foreseeable future, even if it’s technically a bit more prestigious at the moment by virtue of being current content. I’m gonna rock out with my Starcaller out, make no mistake. And I will have the memory of this raid for years yet.

So, here’s an official shoutout to my peeps in YMiB: Ose, Chris, Euphie, Megs, Jay, Terex, Shadow, Piggly, X, Tikari – you are my peeps. You are making my dream come true right now, and I can’t thank you guys enough. (and thank you Jay and Tikari for bringing fish feasts – everyone appreciates them a LOT, especially considering how many new ones need to be thrown down with our wiping. ^^;; )

PvE

From baby raider to… raid leader?

Well, maybe not quite. But I have organised, if not provided strat leadership for, my own little Ulduar 10-man, for hardmode achieves and the ultimate goal of trying to get Algalon down, winning us the title “Starcaller”. This was a spur-of-the-moment idea after last night’s ICC and our LK attempts, when I was talking on twitter with Ose and a few other folks about titles, and how the only one I want is Starcaller. I’ve thought it was the prettiest title for a long time, and I’m sure a couple people remember me dreaming of getting it on Aislinn a good 10 months ago. But after getting Lis through Storm Peaks, and thinking on how, as someone who’s sort of accidentally joined the Dwarvish race, she probably would be extremely interested in the origins of Dwarves and the work Brann Bronzebeard is doing, I realised something else: from an RP/personal lore perspective, it’s the only title that I really need.

See, Lis is just a healer. She doesn’t need fancy titles, she hasn’t been a stand-out hero who has saved nations singlehandedly. She wasn’t instrumental in the defeat of the Burning Legion, though she played her part, and she wasn’t part of the strike team sent to bring Arthas down (though she was involved in the attack on the citadel). But what she was (or would’ve been) was someone who volunteered to assist in the exploration and reclamation of Ulduar. So, you see, Starcaller is… her title. And I want desperately for her to have it.

Anyway I’d been waffling on trying to set up my own Ulduar run because surely someone more experienced would set one up, and I’d just get in on that! But no one did and no one did, and when we were talking about titles on Twitter last night, someone told me (jokingly) that I should get Kurn to get it for me, and Kurn responded with “never going back there, but we’ve got an event planning forum! ;)”

I lol’d, as I do, and then I went “hey, y’know… we DO. And if no one’s interested, then no one’s interested, but still… it’d be fun.” So I made a post, just saying “uh, so, anyone want to run Ulduar friday and saturday, to try to get the key and down Algalon for the title?” And lo and behold… people WANTED to! Kurn gave a quick pointer on how many of each role I should plan for, and then I just filled slots.

Then, of course, I log in tonight and I’m missing a chunk of people I thought were coming. Stuff happens, though, and I rearranged – I felt pretty bad because I was planning on having O be my second healer, but then I couldn’t get hold of her to see when she was gonna be back, and I wanted to get going before people lost interest or wandered off (instead of duelling topless in bunny ears outside Ulduar – don’t ask, I have no answers), so I pulled in a guildie’s alt to raid heal instead. :/ Would’ve loved to have her there, boo. Then we were still short a tank and a DPS, so I pulled Megs in to fill our open DPS spot, and we convinced one of our guild’s paladins to tank for us. And with that, we dove into the world of Ulduar achieves and hardmodes.

Flame Leviathan

Oh, what a way to kick off our night, with a couple wipes on Flame Leviathan. Our first attempt was hilarious, partially because Megs and I were both driving and had no idea what we were doing, and also because our raid healer was having problems where he couldn’t hear Mumble. We shifted around who got in what vehicle, and our shadow priest put Mumble on speaker so the shaman could hear what was going on (same room raiding, yay!), and tried again. And again. And then, eventually, we got him down.

Ignis the Furnace Master

We skipped Razorscale, preferring to go on for some harder achieves and not spend the time that fight takes, and started with Ignis, one-shotting the bastard. Easy-peasy.

XT-002 Deconstructor

I was a bit nervous about this one, for some reason, and we had a bit of an issue with our OT getting both debuffs one right after the other, but this hardmode was another quick one-shot.

And, because I’d already killed Razorscale on a weekly…

The Siege of Ulduar: Complete

The Assembly of Iron

This one gave us a little trouble initially, wiping us… pretty quickly, partially because Steelbreaker was standing on a blue rune when the debuff hit his tank, and partially because we hadn’t decided to call the debuff so that I was ready for it, since there IS a tiny lag between debuff on and it showing on Grid. But after that, we cleaned house – I’m not sure how well, because I was mostly focused intently on making sure that damn debuff got cleansed ASAP, and we did lose one of our tanks, but in the end, We got ’em down

Kologarn

Two things stick out at me about this fight: 1) the Monty Python references in Kologarn’s dialogue (“None shall pass!” “Just a scratch!” “Only a flesh wound!” “I’m invincible!”), and 2) the fact that I could hardly heal because when I wasn’t grabbed up in his hand briefly, I was running away from his LASER VISION. Still, despite this, no one died (or fell off the ledge), and we killed him good.

Auriaya

Well. So. The first pull was messy. We were not prepared for the HUGE amount of damage the sentries would be pulling on their tank, and I was still trying to get my bearings when he died. A split second later, I died, because they pounced me. So we sheepishly ran back, I beaconed Auriaya’s tank and had our raid healer keeping an eye on his health, and direct-healed the sentry tank. A LOT. The pull felt messy again, but within seconds we were neatly divided and getting her down, and her little cats, too.

The Antechamber of Ulduar: Complete

Hodir

We decided to do Hodir first because he’s (apparently) the easiest to beat on his hardmode. We had one wipe that was MAINLY because I couldn’t tell the difference between the ground and a hill of snow, apparently, but the second time around, I think we did pretty well.

Thorim

So there was a bit of discussion about who would be staying on the floor and who would be going through the tunnel, and I was decreed to be the “tunnel healer”. It was a bit confusing who was going where, I think, until they realised I’d shuffled the groups around and was saying “Group 1 in the tunnel, Group 2 stays!” I’m not sure how the floor group did, except that they all lived, but the tunnel group rocked. The calls of “right!” and “left!” from our tank with the flame-shooting runic statue thingy was like clockwork, I seriously felt badass in this encounter. Beautiful. I was kind of amused to see an achievement pop up before we’d even aggro’d Thorim, but then it was all just healing – and it was still like clockwork – to me, anyway. Everyone was on their game, it was fantastic, and then there was Achievement Spam.

Freya

Freya is where we stopped for the night. We got an awesome (but very speedy) rundown from our guildie Lib, along with her very special Pancake Buff, and then proceeded to wipe VERY messily twice before needing to call it quits so people could head to bed. Which is just as well, because I needed to make a “great job guys, thank you Tikari for the fish feasts, be here tomorrow at 8.45, IF YOU’RE LATE, YOU’RE FIRED!” post in the thread on the forums, and I needed to make this blog post.

I’m just… buzzing, tonight. not only have I gotten to see more than half of the instance I’ve loved since before I even had a ghost of a chance of seeing it, but I got to see it with nine amazing guildies, and it was my raid. Yeah, Euphie and Ose did most of the strats (with Lib helping out towards the end, though she was not in the raid), but this raid is my baby. I want to see how far me and these nine kids can push it. Would I prefer it to be 24 other awesome people? Absolutely, I am in love with 25-man raids. But this is fun, too, this little rag-tag crew running through Ulduar because I made it happen. Sure, we all outgear the content. Sure, I forgot to have Piggly enchant my cloak because of the horror that was his gnome shirtless and bunny-eared. But damn, did we have fun.

I can’t wait to see what we can do tomorrow. :D

General · PvE · Roleplay

New Computer Soon? And other ramblings.

One can only hope. I get a certain amount of money from my uncle for Christmas and my birthday, every year. I’ve also found a laptop that I like, that should run pretty nice for WoW (as I’ve said before – I don’t need it to be 120fps in Dalaran or anything like that. An average 30fps is fine, higher is, of course, better, but whatevs) and isn’t TOO expensive. I’ve emailed my dad saying I found a good one, and that if he’ll spot me the money/buy it for me/whatever, he is welcome to have my holiday money – Christmas and my birthday in the spring. If we do that, he’d only be paying about $250, which is less than he’ll spend on my sister this Christmas, I can tell you right now. So we’ll see how that goes – cross your crossables for me.

Also, tonight I’m trying out raiding on my girlfriend’s laptop. If the damn patch downloader will get its arse in gear and finish up in the next three hours – I’m not holding my breath at this point, but I should be good to go as long as it’s MOSTLY done – so far, my trials have produced the following results: 30fps with no addons, about 20fps with the addons I use on one of my alts when she levels, which are definitely heavier than the ones I have for raiding. AND keep in mind, these were both tested early on in the “yellow” stage of the streaming player, which I’m assuming is going to drag my numbers down. I’m hoping that with all (or at least MOST) of the patching installed and only my raiding addons (Dominos, Grid, Clique, DBM, OmniCC, Quartz) and everything but WoW and Mumble shut down, I should be getting some pretty good frames tonight. Or, at least, pretty damn awesome by my normal standards (ie – anything over 10fps in a 25m).

Last night I rediscovered my hunter, Summer, as I finally got her out of Hellfire and into Zangarmarsh, while also levelling up her poor neglected hyena, Impisi. Yes, I know Summer’s name shows up as Sámhradh, but that’s just Irish for Summer, so work with me. Summer’s been around (and slowly levelling) for a good long while, though I don’t recall when I first rolled her. I remember her being stuck in the teens for a while, and then she spent a good chunk of time in the 30s, and then a HUGE amount of time in the 50’s, and she’s been stuck at just over 60 for a few months now. I respecced her just after 4.0 hit, but otherwise haven’t poked around on her at all. But last night, feeling aimless and lonely, I logged onto her and started levelling a bit. She dinged once, got a nice new bow, and I basically cannot WAIT to get her to Nagrand – she’s always felt more comfortable in places like Orgrimmar and the Barrens, she’ll like hanging out (and helping out) with the Mag’har, or however that’s spelt. I also plan to tame her a void stalker at some point, or possibly one of the white-ish wolves in Terrokar. :D And ONE DAY she will have that red wolf I keep meaning to get her…

And while playing her, trying to rearrange her action bars with their new layout and new abilities, and trying to figure out what rotation would work best, I was reminded that I’m kind of a crappy hunter. I always was, honestly, but I got by. And normally I’d be trying to improve, but the thing is that I play Summer for FUN. I don’t generally queue up for dungeons with her (I hate DPS queue times), she’s not in a guild, I don’t plan to raid with her (though sometimes I’m tempted). My less-than-optimal huntering is hurting no one but me, and I don’t care, so why should I start focusing NOW on how to get the OMG BEST DPS? Anyway, that ramble aside, she’s very fun to play with. She makes me wish I knew more people who RP’d horde-side, because while I’d love to play her with, say, Fizzy Stouthammer, Summer is a Sin’dorei. She could never be anything else. It just wouldn’t work. So she’s alone (well, with her big brother, who’s kind of dead, so it’s this thing) and it makes me sad, sometimes. :(

But then, I’m also fail at remembering to log on to my RP characters, so, uh. >_>

Anyway, it was a fun evening. I had fun and got to spend some time with a long-neglected favourite of mine, and tonight I’ll be hopefully seeing a raid in more than 4fps for the first time EVER and I’m basically having a grand ol’ time. :) Still feeling a bit in-a-funk, but there are worse things to feel, so.

Now if only I had some SODA. T_T