Zombies everywhere!

 Posted by at 11:38  No Responses »
Oct 042010
 

For as much as I enjoy playing WoW, I enjoy it on a whole different level when I’m playing with Cody. We spent the bulk of our time this weekend grinding out the rep outlined in the last post. We’re still working on both Netherwing and Cenarion Expedition, but the end is within sight on both of those. The only roadblock now1 is money, and that will come soon enough.

We had another smooth Sartharion run for the weekly last night. Having done the raid once before, my confidence in tackling it this time was substantially higher and I dove in fearlessly. Even when we prematurely pulled a pat2, I had no worries about picking them up and holding them while DPS burned them down. Even when we prematurely pulled one of the sub-bosses while fighting a pat, I wasn’t worried; just reacted. Definitely more comfortable in my role than I was a few weeks ago.

We also managed to convince some of our guildmates to stick around and do some achievement-oriented runs with us in both the Oculus and Culling of Stratholme. Cody and I finished our Ruby and Emerald Void achievements, having already obtained our Amber Void one. That leaves me to get Experienced Drake Rider, and then I can consider myself done with Oculus. Culling of Stratholme presented us with an opportunity to try and get Zombiefest…which we did! The strategy is a little weird, but in order to kill the requisite number of zombies, you need to kite3 the second boss into a building, allowing any killed zombies time to respawn. Once you kill that boss, they stop respawning in the front section. Once you down the boss, you proceed through the building until you’re out the other side. Now the fun begins. You go back to the first area and kite all of the zombies—around 85—all the way back through the town, through the building, and to the other side where there are more zombies. Then you AOE4 the crap out of them until they drop. 100 zombies in one minute.

Part of the urgency for doing these dungeon achievements is getting Glory of the Hero, which rewards the Red Proto-Drake. Scuttlebutt and rumor suggests that this reward, if not the achievement, will go away when the next patch drops. We were worried that the patch might drop tomorrow5, but it seems that the patch won’t hit until next week, giving us a little breathing room. It’d be very sad to miss out on such a cool-looking mount.

Speaking of patches, Cataclysm‘s release date has been set: December 7th, Azeroth changes.

  1. For me, anyway. Cody is an auction house maven and is absolutely rolling in it. []
  2. Short for “patrol,” which refers to some mobs that are wandering around on a preset path. []
  3. Kiting refers to pulling aggro on a target, and then leading it to another location []
  4. Area-of-effect; an attack that does damage in a radius rather than just to a single target []
  5. Blizzard always patches on Tuesday []

Mount Up

 Posted by at 16:44  No Responses »
Oct 012010
 

As it stands right now, Jakosta has 51 mounts. Cody and I are gunning for the Mountain o’ Mounts achievement, which itself rewards a mount for obtaining. The road from 51 to 100 is largely a matter of rep-grinding and spending “money” (be it gold, badges, honor points, or whatever else). Then there are the remaining few that have to be obtained through RNG1.

Why do this? With a few exceptions2, a variety of mounts doesn’t afford you any material benefit. They’re vanity rewards, offering little more than a wider selection of things to look at while you flit from place to place, and dubious bragging rights. The honest answer is…because accumulating stuff is fun, even if it’s virtual stuff.

Right now, I’m running dailies for the Argent Tournament, the Hyldnir, Netherwing, the Sha’tari Skyguard, and pursuing the Mag’har quest line. The latter three are in pursuit of reputation-dependent mounts; the mounts cost gold, but you can’t buy them without an Exalted reputation. The Tournament dailies reward Champion Seals, which are then used in purchasing mounts. The Hyldnir daily is RNG from the quest reward. After that, it’ll be on to the PvP-based mounts, which are fairly uniform in price and fairly quick to obtain. The most expensive mount cost 50,000 honor points. It’s a trivial matter to get over 35,000 honor points through a single Wintergrasp victory coupled with turning in the weekly Wintergrasp quests. The remaining 15,000 points can be gleaned from repeating Wintergrasp or doing other battlegrounds.

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  1. Random Number Generation, or chance. Think of it like a die roll. You have some percent chance to see something drop on any given occurrence of a particular event, such as a mob dying. The game “rolls” this chance when the mob dies. What you get from the mob in loot is the result. []
  2. There are a handful of very difficult to obtain mounts that are faster than the “normal” epic mounts. “Normal” epic flying mounts afford a 280% speed increase over the character’s base running speed on the ground. “Extreme” epic flying mounts afford a 310% speed increase. []

The Main Switch

 Posted by at 22:00  No Responses »
Sep 262010
 

Some time back, I made the decision that Jakosta would now be my “main,” rather than Deowyn. Before, I was focusing on nothing for Jakosta other than leveling, and then gearing her out to be a sufficient tank for our guild. Since then, I’ve grown to enjoy playing her much more than Deowyn. As a result, I’ve been branching out my pursuits with her into the realm of achievements. I’m not planning to do Loremaster with her, though. That’ll remain Deowyn’s claim to fame. The rest are fair game, though.

Dovetailing nicely with that, Cody has decided that she wants to get as many mounts as she can. We’ve been working together on raising our Cenarion Expedition (for the Cenarion War Hippogryph) and Sha’tari Skyguard (for the nether rays) reputations. She’s also started on the Netherwing quests (for the Netherwing drakes), which I’ll probably start on soon myself. She already has the Green Proto-Drake from the Oracles, which Jakosta is working on the other half of right now with the Frenzyheart. We’re also both running the Argent Tournament dailies as a matter of course, and there are plenty of mounts that go along with that. So, all-in-all, we’re pretty widespread on our various mount fronts.

Played around a little more with my Death Knight‘s UI, though it’s still pretty silly to be working on a UI when I have no idea what my end-game UI priorities for such a character will be. I can’t bring myself to use the default Blizzard UI anymore, though. It’s just too clunky compared to the sleeker setups you can get with addons. Plus, it’s fun.

Into Eternity’s Eye

 Posted by at 12:42  No Responses »
Sep 212010
 

Continuing my streak of successful raids, Cody, Kt, and I tackled Malygos last night for the weekly raid quest.  We had previously done a guild run on Malygos for the weekly quest, but I was playing Deowyn at the time.  Deowyn, unfortunately, also had the key required to begin the fight against Malygos.  After about an hour of unsuccessfully attempting to find a group, Cody urged me to just start one, so I did.  We were fortunate enough to find a boomkin with the key and away we went.

Phases 1 and 2 went very smoothly, owing in no small part to the fact that they’re pretty easy to explain once you’ve gone through them once.  I don’t think our DPS team ever let an orb get near Malygos, which made the fight considerably shorter than it was the last time we did it.

And then Phase 3 rolled around.

For the uninitiated, the Malygos fight works in three stages, each increasing in complexity.  The first is essentially a straight-up tank-and-spank.  Malygos is tanked more or less in the middle of a platform suspended in space while DPS unloads on him.  Occasionally, a magical orb will spawn and head slowly towards him.  If it reaches him, he gets a buff.  As such, DPS should direct all firepower on the orb as soon as they can.  It helps tremendously to have a Death Knight who can pull the orb to him, which we did.

In phase two, which kicks off as soon as Malygos drops below 50% health, the dragon takes to the skies and the group needs to stay sheltered within anti-magic bubbles he occasionally drops.  While there, they need to take out several adds that spawn in.  A small handful of these adds can be fought in melee, but it’s mostly a ranged fight.  Once those adds are all dead, phase three begins with the platform shattering.

Fortunately, a bunch of drakes are there to catch you as you fall, and it is on their backs that you need to finish the fight.  Problem One: get within 30 yards of Malygos, and you get vaporized in short order.  Problem Two: if Malygos focuses on you and you don’t deploy Flame Shield, which requires “energy” that you may not have enough of at the moment you get hit, and you get vaporized in short order.  Problem Three: If the healers don’t stack their HOTs to the full 5 stacks and then blast out their AOE heal on a regular basis, you get vaporized in short order.  Seeing a trend?

We lost half of our raid in short order.  I switched from trying to attack Malygos to healing, since it looked like our healers had both died.  This managed to sustani the other four drakes enough to beat Malygos down.  And then I got caught in Malygos’s gaze without enough energy for Flame Shield. Fortunately, he was close enough to dead at that point that my own death wasn’t an impedance to finishing him off.

I continue to dislike that fight.