Archive for the ‘Cataclysm!’ Category

Where Should I Go Again? A Look At Level 80-85 Cataclysm Zones.   18 comments

One of the trickiest things about expansions is having to level up again…and being a “newbie” all over! My biggest problem is I’m never quite sure where to go next, even after leveling all of my alts, I still sometimes have to ask in guild chat “Uh, guys, where should I go at level 30…and don’t tell me Desolace!”. So, as much for my reference as yours, I thought that I’d offer up this little tidbit for those looking to set out their leveling plans before December 7! And, uh, not have to ask where to go next ;)

You can find a great interactive map of the zones here, which I’ve reproduced for you below, to show you where each new zone is located (although I really do recommend clicking the link for the original!).

The New Zones -

  • Hyjal 80-82 – Located in northern Kalimdor. Story lines involve the druid defenses of the world tree.
  • Vashj’ir 80-82 – Underwater zone located off the western coast of the Eastern Kingdoms. Story lines involve Naga attempting to enslave Neptulon.
  • Deepholm 82-83 – Located through the Maelstrom. Story lines include The Earthen Ring trying to recover the World Pillar from the Twilight’s Hammer.
  • Uldum 83-84 – Located in Southern Kalimdor. Story lines include Titan lore and archeology, as well as an introduction to Al’Akir and the Ramkahen.
  • Twilight Highlands 84-85 – Located in Khaz Modan (Eastern Kingdoms). Story lines include disputes between the alliance and horde – and Twilight’s Hammer.
  • Tol Barad – 85 – Located off the coast of Lodaeron (Eastern Kingdoms). There will be a Wintergrasp-esque PvP zone, and a daily quest hub.

Also don’t forget that many of the old world zones have been redone, so consider leveling up that goblin or worgen from scratch to check out the new flavors of Azeroth! I plan on leveling my Goblin without the benefit of Heirlooms just to see as many of the newly revamped zones as possible on my journey.

Of course, I am forgetting something very important! What would new zones be without new instances to go with them?! I don’t know about you, but instancing is one of my favorite parts of leveling. So of course I’m going to want to visit them all on my journey to level 85 and after! (I will probably also be able to offer a rant or two about them on the way…so, uh, stay tuned).

The New Instances –

  • Throne of Tides – 5 man, levels 80-81. Located in Vashj’ir.
  • Blackrock Caverns – 5 man, level 80-81. Located in Blackrock Mountain/Spire (just inside the main ring).
  • Abyssal Maw – 5 man, level 81-83. Located in Vashj’ir. (May only be The Throne of Tides, and no additional instances at this time!)
  • Vortex Pinnacle – 5 man, level 82-84. Located in the Skywall/Uldum.
  • The Stone Core – 5 man, level 83-84. Located in Deepholme.
  • Grim Batol – 5 man, level 85. Located in Twilight Highlands.
  • Halls of Origination – 5 man, level 85. Located in Uldum.
  • Lost City of Tol’vir – 5 man, level 85. Located in Uldum.
  • Heroic: Shadowfang Keep – 5 man, level 85
  • Heroic Deadmines – 5 man, level 85

What was that? You can’t find the zone in? No problem, I’ve got you covered! Just check this out!

Good Luck Everyone! The Last One to 85 is a Rotten Egg! I hope everyone is as excited as I am to start the journey :) I can’t wait to hear about everyone’s adventures in the weeks to come!

Also, please don’t hesitate to let me know if I’ve missed a zone or instance, so that I can update the information before release!

Posted November 17, 2010 by Beruthiel in Cataclysm!

I’ve Made My Decision, Mon.   27 comments

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

After much internal debate, I have finally made my decision. As soon as the new race changes are available, Beru will become a troll.

I have struggled with this decision since they announced that Druids could be Trolls. I have loathed the female Tauren casting model ever since vanilla. So much so that Savory Deviate Delight was considered a “raid consumable” to me. When they announced ToL – a form that I got to raid in and hide that god awful Tauren casting animation, I was thrilled. But then they took my ToL away from me, and forced me back into that horrible clunky animation. And shifting still removes all costume effects.

Many times in my debate I have wondered if I would feel weird playing a toon that I have been playing for the past 6 years if she was “different”. I have struggled with if I thought I would lose part of “Beru” by race changing her. I like the gentle giants that the Tauren represent in WoW lore. I think that Thunder Bluff is beautiful. But when push comes to shove – on the day I created my druid, if Troll had been an option, I would probably have never gone Tauren to begin with.

I had thought that I made up my mind a while back on this dilemma…and then they introduced troll flight form. It’s cool, sure. But HELLO – it’s a friggin’ dude. The fact that I was going to morph into a male bat for flight form put a bit of a hiccup in my decision. I understand the lore reasoning for needing a different flight form. And, I do think that the flight form is kinda cool. But IT IS DECIDELY MALE. Seriously, would it have taken much more time/effort to code in a female version of the damn bat?

So here I was, uncertain again.

Sure, just like everyone else I weighed out the pros and the cons of the differing racials, etc. But when it came down to it, my desire to not to be a female Tauren caster is so strong that it outweighs just about everything else – including bat boy. It may seem superficial (and it is), it may seem silly (and it is), but in the end, and after 6 years of hating it, I just don’t want to deal with having to look at the female Tauren casting model any longer.

The more I thought about it, there were only two things I would miss about Beru being a Tauren: The new cultivation racial (hey, don’t knock the power of speed herbing in flight form until you’ve tried it) and warstomp. And in the end – those two things just weren’t enough to hold me.

I think I came to this decision over the weekend, when I made an attempt to “pre-purchase” a race change. (which as a side note isn’t available for druids, you get an “you have no races to change to” error message when you attempt to process the payment). In the end – it’s not permanent. If I hate it, I can always go back to being the gentle giant. Until then, and as soon as they are available, I will enjoy my more svelte figure and relish in the fact that I will no longer sound like a member of the 1976 East German Women’s Olympic Swim Team.

So, I’m curious! How many other of my Tauren brothers and sisters will be feeling the Mojo come Cataclysm?

(image courtesy of mmo-champion).

Posted November 16, 2010 by Beruthiel in Cataclysm!, Changes, Do not feed the Trolls!

Will 25s Continue To Be Worth The Effort?   43 comments

Last night on Twitter I was having a discussion with Jar regarding the new nerf to Efflorescence (which is a rant for another day), and one of the things that I mentioned was something that Keeva brought up in her post on the changes. Namely that the change, which effectively means that efflorescence now only heals 6 people, has a significantly larger impact on 25 man raids than it does on 10 man raids. Which then got me to really thinking about the differences between the two raid types, which of course then started making me ask questions.

Forgive me if I start to grow a bit rambly here as I work through my thoughts on this…or run in fear as you see my brain try to process and function. If you look hard enough you can probably see smoke coming out of my ears as the cogs are turning in overtime.

******* Before I get started here, I want to make something very clear: I do not have a problem with 10s, nor do I have a problem with them getting equal gear for their efforts. I am happy that my 10 man brethren were finally recognized and received the validation as a “proper” raiders that they sought throughout the entirety of this expansion. I just wanted to get that in before the “QQ more” comments that I’ve seen from some of the 10 man raiders who seemingly characterize valid concerns from the 25 man front as nothing more than whining. As such, please keep that in mind when commenting here. ******** Read the rest of this entry »

Posted November 10, 2010 by Beruthiel in Cataclysm!, Guild Management, Raiding

The People In Charge Get Tired Too!   9 comments

The past few weeks have been absolutely exhausting for me. Between traveling for work, Blizzcon and a major content patch, I feel like I’ve been running at high speed for a month straight, without a moment to stop and catch my breath. In short, I’m absolutely exhausted. Now, I’m sure that I’m not the only person that is feeling overwhelmed and swamped. Actually, I’m positive of that. So I’m not going to sit here and whine about how, omg, I’m so busy and act as if my busy is more important/different than your busy. Because that would be preposterous…and, well, I recognize that’s just not true!

But what I did want to talk about was how those super busy moments can have a direct effect on your guild/raid. And to do that, I’m going to use some examples from my own failings the past few weeks – learn by other’s mistakes and all that, right? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted November 4, 2010 by Beruthiel in Cataclysm!, Guild Management

Monday Musings – Are We There Yet?   14 comments

 

On The Twilight of Wrath of the Lich King

I feel like a kid in the back seat of my parent’s car headed to the amusement park. You know the feeling: excited, fidgety, and impatient. Are we there yet?

We still have three more weeks of raiding before we take a couple of weeks off before the expansion, but I’m ready for it to be here already. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still enjoying the raiding. And while we could pare our raid nights down to two nights a week, the majority of people preferred to stay at 3 and just have earlier stop times. We’ve turned our Mimiron Head runs into a “how fast can this be done” deal, we clear out ICC, save a hiccup here and there, without event. And once they take out Mimiron’s head, our raid week becomes even shorter, not that it’s necessarily a bad thing. But…the feeling of being “finished” is most definitely setting in for me, and I’m sure for many others.

What was once new and shiny, now feels old and worn out. I can’t even be bothered to run ICC runs on my alts, which is quite unusual for me. I think about it – and then I think about if I want to spend 2-4 hours in an alt run in ICC – and mostly, I don’t. I can think of about a dozen other things that I’d rather do with the time, some that are even inside of WoW! I guess, perhaps, I’m just Lich King’d out.

I look at the calendar, and at the risk of sounding like the whiny 6 year old that I’m feeling like, December 7, 2010 seems so incredibly far away. Are we there yet?

On Bucket Lists

I’ve been picking at by WotLK bucket list since November of last year. If you look at my “goals” page, you will see that I posted that list on November 9, 2009. And you know what? I’ve managed to complete all but 3 things on my list, thanks to finally getting Anzu and catching that sneaky fish in Ironforge! Of those remaining 3 things, I’m actively working on leveling the DK, and I will probably make an effort to do the Dreanei starting area before the world changes. I doubt I’ll get that AB rep exalted ;) All in all, that’s not too shabby and I think I will leave WotLK feeling “completed”.

However, I am not the only person around the blogosphere working on bucket lists. I’ve read post after post about who is frantically trying to clear out their lists, and on the flip side from those who have looked at their lists and decided to rip it up into tiny pieces and let Cataclysm come regardless.

I’m not entirely sure that I could take Keeva’s approach, which while very admirable, doesn’t fit “me”. Of course, everyone will be different in what appeals to them and how they want to approach things, so while Keeva wants to be surprised and “unfinished”, my OCD kicks in and I just don’t think I have the same willpower to let things go that she does!

In looking back on it – I’m glad that I made my list and have picked away at it. That being said, I am now at the point that I’m ready to just move on.

On Alts

I have finally gotten everyone in order, save my hunter and warlock. And it was…painful. Which is probably an understatement.

I got Nadine situated over the weekend and tanked on her a little bit. And, I really like the new paladin tanking! I don’t know if it’s because I’m new to the paladin Prot spec or what, but I find it a lot more fun than it used to be! Of course, I always found warrior tanking the most fun to begin with, more immersive. Paladins are now a bit more like warriors and I like it!

I have also dusted off Isulde, the DK who has been sitting at level 72 for as long as I can remember, and picked her back up. One of the reasons that I shelved her to begin with was that I really didn’t care for DK tanking, and I had made her specifically to be a tank. So this go around I did give her a tanking spec, but I’m focusing on DPS with her. And unholy DPS is still a lot of fun. Over the weekend I managed to get her halfway to 76. The only question remaining is if my impatience with DPS queues will win out over my hatred of DK tanking.

On Heirlooms and Leveling the Goblin – Looking Ahead

I have come across a bit of an interesting issue this past weekend as well. You see, the majority of my heirloom items are on my main account, with Beru. My second account basically only has melee heirlooms that my paladin and DK have shared. Now, on my main account I have a full set of melee heirlooms for a rogue, including the leather BP and shoulders. However, I have no more character slots on my main account.

Which means my rogue’s placeholder name is currently being saved on my second account, which has nothing but heirloom trinkets to support her. Now, I could probably transfer a toon off of my main account to make room there for my rogue. Or, alternatively, create a toon to transfer over that I load up with heirloom items. It really wouldn’t be too big of a deal, I don’t think.

But then I got to thinking. And, predictably, that is where the trouble started. Do I want to level my rogue with the heirlooms? I mean, they have redone all of the old world content, and each of the new races has a brand new starting zone? Do I really want to rush through all of that? I’m not entirely sure that I do.

Of course, then I run into the “well, what about outlands and WotLK content” problem. Because I absolutely will want to level through those faster – even if I do want to take the 1-60 content slower. Then I start thinking about how just having the weapons might be nice, even if I don’t wear any of the +experience gear at the start of the adventure. And I find myself with quite the conundrum. I suppose I could always wait to make a decision. I mean, it’s not as if I will be leveling my goblin straight out of the gate. Moving my characters around can always wait until I’m actually ready to level the goblin, I suppose.

I will say, however, that this is the first time that I’ve considered not using any of the heirloom gear available to me, and I find it an interesting decision to consider.

On The Cataclysm Events Starting While I’m Stuck At Work

Boo. Just Boo. I’m insanely jealous of those that are at home and experiencing it currently! Alas, it is what it is, and someone’s got to pay the bills! So I suppose that I will just have to experience it tonight when I get home. Save some elementals for me please! :)

How About You? Are you experiencing the same “are we there yet” feeling that I am? What are you doing to help you whittle the days away while you wait?

Posted November 1, 2010 by Beruthiel in Cataclysm!

Monday Musings: I Attempted to Raid on the PTR Edition   10 comments

Is it really Monday again? The weekend flew by me so quickly, I can hardly believe that it’s gone! Well, let’s go ahead and start the week with my usual Monday babblings, shall we?

On Raiding

We mercifully took the week off from 10 man raids. It was so…strange to have some free time. I really wasn’t quite sure to do with myself!

Our 25s last week were….tumultuous. I suspect that it’s a good bit of expansion lethargy setting in, but I actually got angry enough at the raid to holler a bit. No – it really should not take us 11 pulls to kill something we killed in 1 pull last week. While frustrating, I’m hoping that this week is better. In addition, we have a person or two that have mysteriously disappeared, also a bit to be expected, I suppose. But nonetheless, disappointing.

We went down last Monday and took a few pulls on Alone in the Darkness. It was…ok. We made it into the final phase without difficulty. (I also learned that you probably shouldn’t try certain achievements without any keepers…but we won’t talk about that!). We tried a few strategies for dealing with the final phase in our 5ish pulls that we took, with varying degrees of success. We had a few people post true “zerg” videos with some strategies that make liberal use of Army of the Dead and Rock Elementals, and the raid as a whole wants to give that a try, so tonight when we go in, we will be trying it out and seeing how it works.

Other than that, there isn’t really much exciting happening. I will, however, offer up some reports of how our attempts at a zerg go. I imagine it will largely be amusing and fun.

Raiding on the PTR

I have learned that trying to schedule anything on an unstable server is an exercise in frustration. What am I talking about? Well, we scheduled an ICC 10 on the PTR to see how things were panning out. As it turned out, one of our tanks couldn’t log into the PTR at all, and the other got kicked from the loading screen every time he tried to log in. Some of our DPS had to repatch the PTR and didn’t realize it in time. So we ended up with 5 people from the guild.
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Posted September 27, 2010 by Beruthiel in Cataclysm!, Druid Healing, Raiding

Some Quick PTR Tidbits   6 comments

Due to the server crashing (and my body crashing, and me being ill), I had a little bit of time to play about on the PTR yesterday. I didn’t do much, and haven’t healed an instance or raid on the yet – but I am going to get in there and give it a try when I have a little bit of extra time. I will wait to offer any commentary on how the new abilities will affect current raiding until I have the time to test it out some.

I did do some number gathering on what my spells are hitting for on the PTR and on live, but I haven’t had time to sit down and do a comparison as yet. I am hoping to be able to spend some time with that this weekend. I am also running with my standard glyphs, and haven’t had the chance to play around with some of the others.

However, in my short time there, I did have a chance to look at a few interesting things that I hadn’t seen much mention of anywhere yet, so I thought I’d point them out. Let’s talk about what did stand out to me a bit right away though, shall we? Potential Spoilers Ahead
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Posted September 16, 2010 by Beruthiel in Cataclysm!, Changes

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