Tag Archives: Mists of Pandaria

Why I Still Log On Every Day

If you haven’t seen it yet, there’s a buzz coming from Mr. and Mrs. WoW this week: a community project aimed at combating the negativity that tends to spawn at the end of an expansion by taking a look at the things that we still love about the game. We each pay $15 a month to log in–but what do we do once we’re there? For those of us who have stayed subscribed in pre-Warlords Warcraft, why do we log in?

Friends

Hands down, this is the number one reason I log on at any time other than raid time. I said it on Twitter jokingly but it’s not untrue: most of the time these days, WoW is an extremely interactive chat program. Real ID, guild chat, the best private channel in the entire game (sorry, I don’t mean to put down anyone else’s, but ours is the best, okay?), and sometimes Mumble–there’s almost always someone around to talk to.My Perch

There’s a reason my blog and Twitter have a billion screenshots of this spot. Most days, if you’re on Durotan or Ysera, you can find me on my perch or The Stoop, and if I’m not AFK, you can bet I’m sitting there talking to someone. I’m not going to get sappy, but I am going to say that I do care about the friends with whom I play WoW. They’re genuinely awesome people, and if I unsubbed and couldn’t chat anymore, I’d be bummed. 

Raids

I’ve said this a million times already in the past few years, and it hasn’t changed: I play to raid. Killing dragons with a bunch of people that I usually don’t hate is a good time. Most of the time. Except when I’ve got 5 fps for almost an entire raid night because I forgot to close background programs on my crap computer. 

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Okay, even then, I still enjoy raiding. If they took raids out of WoW, I’d stop playing. Maybe I’d go be bad at League of Legends some more. I hear Hello Kitty Island Adventure is a pretty good time…

The Carrot

Blizzard, as a company, is exceptionally good at carrots. I am not naive; I get that it’s intentional and it keeps us playing the game–and it totally works.

Right now, there are two carrots that I’m aiming for every week, though they look an awful lot like mounts:

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For weeks, I solo-cleared ICC 25 & Heroic Lich King; I got tired of that and stuck a lockout on my rogue to use instead. There’s a moment when I loot his corpse (again) where there’s hope it’s going to be there–of course, all that’s on it are tokens and axes (again), but I’ll keep doing it until I get it.

Thankfully, flying to Karazhan is more time consuming than actually killing the Huntsman, but he disappoints me every week, too. Jerk. Keep your Warhorse, what do I care.

Those are my three main reasons for playing–what are yours?  Don’t forget to take a look at Mr. and Mrs. WoW’s series of posts and all of the bloggers who have contributed to the community project!

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Mists of Pandaria Compilation Album

It’s time again for the compilation album I make for my guild. While not all of it will make sense, I think there’s enough cross over in the boss mechanics from Siege that you guys can appreciate some of this!

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And a bonus album!

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You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby: My Mists of Pandaria Characters

Despite the expansion being possibly 6 months away, the feeling that we are coming to the close of Mists of Pandaria lingers. When MoP was announced, I was not quiet about how un-interesting I thought it sounded–until I played the beta. It swept me off my feet and hasn’t stopped. 

I wanted, then, to take a look at my characters as we round out the last few months of Pandaria and prepare for our next great adventure: 

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The last time I did a summary of my characters like this was way back in 2010–hard to believe how far they’ve come (and my, how they’ve grown!) in 4 years. 

My little team is poised and ready to jump into Warlords with both feet!

 

 

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Why I’m Glad I Dropped 10k Gold on the Black Market Auction House

brawlolcatIt all has to do with the Brawler’s Guild.

I’ve had my eye on these invitations since they first appeared on the BMAH, but they were far too rich for my blood with auctions ending upwards of 50k. However, as Madam Goya continued posting the auctions and more and more people got their hands on invitations, prices quickly came down. Last night I grabbed one at just under 10k. I didn’t think I’d win it, and at first I had a bit of buyer’s remorse. Would it be worth it?

The answer is unquestionably, unmistakably: yes.

I fought through Rank 1 last night and Rank 2 this morning, and it has been the most fun I’ve had in game outside of raiding in a long time. Quick introduction, in case you’ve never seen the Brawler’s Guild, and then I’ll tell you the reasons I love it.

What is the Brawler’s Guild, Exactly?

Walk through a small door in the Deeprun Tram (Alliance–not sure where you Horde folks go) and down a quick ramp, and you find yourself in a bar with a huge pit in the middle. Inside this pit, bosses spawn, and competitors take them on one-on-one. If it’s your first night in the guild, here’s how you get in on the action:

  1. Talk to a Brawler Bouncer. They’ll have a chat option to join the fight.
  2. Wait in a (for me) short queue. Watch other competitors from your realm and sometimes others while you wait.
  3. When it’s almost your turn, you will get an ingame announcement proclaiming “You are next in line!” Get ready!
  4. When the current fight ends, you will be ported down and take on the first Rank 1 boss. There are 4 bosses per rank.
  5. Kill the boss or die trying! If you kill the boss, you get a Brawler’s Purse with some gold and a gray item worth some gold, as well. You then queue again to move onto the second boss. If you die, you can queue to try again until you get it.

The bosses get progressively harder and go from Rank 1 to Rank 8. There are boss mechanics and enrage timers, so you will need to be on your toes!

Why I Love It

The Challenge. Prior to this, my most favorite thing I’d done in-game was the staff quest from Firelands, in particular, the part I had to solo in the Nexus. After a raid, the second thing I love most is a solo challenge that really tests my skill. How well do I know my class? How good am I at handling mechanics when there’s no safety net? This is that kind of challenge, and it’s exciting!

The People. I might just be lucky, but the people I’ve run into so far in the Brawler’s Guild have all been incredible. I was scared the first fight, worried that someone would call me a noob or yell insults at me if I did something stupid, but that was directly the opposite of what actually happened. Instead, people cheered me on, buffed me, joined groups with me so we could buff each other, rezzed me, and whispered me to encourage me and give me tips. I hope this experience continues, because it has been extremely rewarding so far.

The Experience. The whole setup is just fun. It’s fast-paced, you can watch other competitors, you feel like you’re progressing through the levels, you’re testing your skill–it feels exactly like what they described: a Fight Club for adventurers looking to test their mettle.

That is why I love the Brawler’s Guild. If you can get an invite grab one and step into the pit. You won’t be sorry!

I’ll be posting the December Challenge later this week, by the way! 

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Assorted Thoughts: A Month In

We’re almost a month into Mists of Pandaria; doesn’t seem like that long, does it? We’ve tilled our farms, we’re earning our rep, we’ve stepped into some heroics or LFR or raids, and we’re starting to get a feel for this expansion.

So far, I dig it. I was never overwhelmed and blown away, but it’s like the whole expansion sneaked up behind me and surprised me with little bits of awesome. I’m enjoying the expansion as much as any other at this point, and that’s saying something, since MoP had me concerned from the get go.

Wanderer's Festival

Here’s a few thoughts from my experiences so far; how have yours differed? What’s going on so far with you, or what’s demanding your attention?

About Those Dailies…

I like dailies. I really, actually do. They’re a great way for me to get things accomplished without being chained to my computer for 30+ minutes at a time. I can stop in the middle, go hang out with my kids, answer the phone, chat with a friend, and when I come back, I’m right where I left off.

I will say that unlocking Shado-Pan and August Celestials made my head spin a little. Shado-Pan is probably my least favorite group of dailies, mostly because my Pandaren companion hasn’t learned to Shadowmeld and Swift Flight. We’re working on it, though.

Healer Rehab

In order to raid, my guild needed more healers. I’ve certainly healed here and there along the way for particular fights, but I haven’t been a dedicated healer since Burning Crusade. However, the biggest problem I’m having is one that I’m sure a lot of healers have had this expansion: healing as if the way we use mana hasn’t changed.

Even though I know exactly what I should be doing, I end up falling into old habits when the damage starts getting high, and pretty soon I’m watching the Innervate cooldown. I’m going to have to keep working on making new habits.

The good news is, I actually enjoy healing again (SHH, don’t tell anyone). It’s been long enough that it doesn’t feel like the same old, same old way it used to feel.

Plus, I’m a tree again. That alone is enough to make it worth it.

You Can Dance If You Want To

Guilds & Priorities

Right before and right after an expansion hits, it’s not unusual for a guild to go through some growing pains. Some people move out, other people move in. This time, though; it was a big deal for me. Several people I’ve raided with for years were unsatisfied with 25-mans and decided to leave to join a 10-man guild. It’s better that they did this in the long run than be unhappy, but I find that I miss them quite a bit.

It’s led me to think about what my priorities really are when it comes to raiding. Do I still care as much about 25-man content as I thought I did? I don’t know right now. Do I need the “epic” of 25-mans (bigger raids have always felt more epic to me; I know not everyone agrees) or could I be satisfied with a 10-man?

With that group went some of the people I consider my closest in-game friends, and perhaps just as importantly, the ones that took me seriously as a player and to whom my opinions mattered. I’ve discovered that particular aspect is more important to me than I realized. I’m interested to see what happens in the next month or so as we progress, and how I ultimately decide my priorities. Right now, it’s still unclear.

Raiding is still fun; that much hasn’t changed, at least!

Second Tree from the Left

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/cast Stealth

Here we are, Mists of Pandaria is about to be officially released and handed out to a bunch of very level-hungry World of Warcraft players. I don’t need to ask if you’re excited!

Unfortunately, for reasons beyond my control, I’m not able to get Mists of Pandaria on release. However, thanks to the very considerate intervention of some pretty awesome people, I’ll be getting it only a week late instead of having to wait until November. Continue reading

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5.0 Patch Day Mayhem

Best advice I have for pre-patch is read all the blogs. See the bottom of this post and the comments for resources, posts, and guides. If you have one, please link it!

Here’s the problem. In the past, I did patch days like everyone else does patch days in the blogosphere. I talked about my class, I wrote guides, I talked about all the changes. Here’s what I’ve decided: there are so many people doing that way better than I would.

So instead, we’re going to amble down the path of the many, many half-finished blog posts I’ve written about this patch and Mists and the game in general. We’re going to hit each point as succinctly as possible (which means this post will go on forever…) and, yeah. That’s the plan.

Point 1: Where I Stand on Mists of Pandaria

When MoP was announced at that fateful Blizzcon, I looked at my husband and said, “You have got to be kidding me. Pandas? They’re going to base our entire expansion on an April Fool’s joke?” Later came: “Who am I fighting? What will I be raiding? What is my purpose?”

I would never completely discount something without seeing it first, but my initial response was slightly more than reserved, slightly less than annoyed. Internally, I gave Blizzard this challenge: you’re going to have to sell me hard on this one.

For months, no matter how interesting the news came out, I dismissed it. Over and over again I brushed it off, sneered, or sighed at “monk” this and “pandaren” that and “Horde” this and “Alliance” that.

Then I played the beta. I wanted to play because it was beta, not because my mind had changed. I wanted to see it for myself. This was it–the moment Blizzard would have to sell me on Mists of Pandaria.

Ambermist in Astral Form in Mists of Pandaria Continue reading

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