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For the… Horde?

January 13, 2010

I’ve spent the last few days running around on Lilleigh, my horde toon.  She’s level 45 now, and I love her dearly, especially since mage has always held a special place in my heart.  I must report, though, the one thing that’s standing out to me more than anything else is how inconvenient it is being horde.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m really enjoying being a part of the other side, seeing the horde cities (they’re all so unique and beautiful!!), and grouping with the likes of Orc, Tauren, Troll, and Undead (Forsaken?) for some random dungeons.  I’m trying to see the horde side before Cataclysm hits and am making sure to tour around to every zone where there is one to see the horde towns and do the horde quests.

Therein lies the trouble.  I’ve always been alliance.  From zone one, alliance characters flow from zone to zone almost carelessly as they quest their way to greatness.  Elwynn, to Westfall, to Redridge, to Duskwood, to Stranglethorn Vale and so on.  It’s the same no matter your race.  I’m not finding this to be the case with horde and it could be that I started out as Blood Elf, or maybe it’s a horde-wide problem.  The first few zones are seamless as a belf.  All the way to the Ghostlands, the leveling is amazing, but then what?

The only way I’ve found out of the Blood Elf haven is the orb in Silvermoon City.  Yet, when one takes the orb, and arrives at Undercity, they’re left in a zone where the quests are too low-level.  If they stayed in the Ghostlands until they were done, the next zone over from Undercity, Silverpine Forest, is also too low-level, yet the quests in Hillsbrad, at Tarren Mill, are almost all too high for the likes of a clothie at this point.  One could take the Zeppelin to Orgrimar and head across the Barrens to Thousand Needles, but it’s remarkably out-of-the-way.  So, a horde lowbie is left scrounging around for quests, or dying repeatedly doing quests they’re still a bit too low-level for and frustration blossoms… at least mine did.

When I was able to go to Desolace, Stranglethorn Vale, and Dustwallow Marsh, things picked up.   I didn’t have so much trouble getting around, especially after I hit 40 and got an epic ground mount (the Swift Pink Hawkstrider).  Being a mage makes things especially easy as I can teleport and portal around the globe.  Yet, I find that getting to the horde towns from zone to zone is a pain in the rump.  While the alliance towns in zones like the Hinterlands are right on the road, the horde town is all the way at the back of the zone and a pain to reach!  To get to the Swamp of Sorrows, which I’ve come to realize is very much more a horde zone than it is alliance, one must run up from Grom’gal in Stranglethorn, across Duskwood and around the alliance town Darkshire, and across the Deadwind Pass.  Thank the light mages can teleport/portal into Stonard.  Yet there isn’t a connecting zone to the Swamp of Sorrows for the horde to go to when they’re done.

I will say, and this is something which just now occurred to me, that horde have a much easier time in the mid-40′s and early 50′s than do alliance.  I’m level 45, I’d normally be running around looking for something to do if I were alliance, yet as a Horde, I have a ton of quests!  So many, in fact, that I’m constantly dropping some to pick up the quests as a I move from zone to zone.  That, my friends, is distinctly not frustrating!

My friends, who have attempted (and failed) to play horde to any real level have constantly complained that it’s easier to level a horde than it is alliance.  That the horde have it easy, that their quests/zones are easier.  Now that I’ve had some time to run around and be horde, I have to say that I disagree.  I love Lilleigh and will definitely meet my new years resolution to play her to 80 and gear her up, but if anything, I’m finding horde more difficult and inconvenient than I did alliance.  Perhaps it’s that I’ve played alliance for years, but the horde is fresh and new and I have no idea where to go to get and do quests.  Or, perhaps it’s that it really is more difficult in general.

I would be most interested to hear what others think!

Welcoming 2010…

January 2, 2010

Happy New Year!!  Can you believe it’s already 2010?!

With the 2010 New Year’s holiday in mind, I set out with this post to honor tradition and share my virtual resolutions.  So, rather than just tossing them out there, I’m going to steal this meme from Anea, who was tagged by Tahas, who was inspired by Forreststump!   It’s fun because it doesn’t just talk about in-game resolutions, but real-life resolutions, too.

In-game:

  • Loremaster – I had so much fun doing this achievement with Majeste, but I’d like to do it all again with Gloryee (because I’m clearly nuts!!).  So, once I get the whole world explored, I’ll begin looking at what I need where.
  • Glory of the Hero – Seems silly, I know, but I still don’t have it done!  If I have anything to say about it, that red proto-drake will be mine!
  • Level Lilleigh to 80/Gear her up – That’s right, I’m making it a priority to level and gear my hordie mage!  I love her, she’s so cute, and I’d like to see all the horde towns in the Outlands & Northrend.  Not to mention, I’ve been ally so long, it might be strange to look around at my random LFG group and see hordies!

Real-life:

  • Commit to freelancing – This is my career goal for 2010.  I intend to increase my freelance volume and make it at least part time income while I’m in graduate school!
  • Finish my novel – I’m about 25,500 words in, so I just need to push forward and finish the project.  Really looking forward to getting this done and edited!
  • Get organized – Biggie!  I really, really need to get better organized.  I’m hoping 2010 will be the magic year for me on this front.  Should be better when the officer floor is replaced and I can use that room for something other than junk storage!

I spent New Years at home, with my husband, playing WoW.   Sounds a little sad, I know, but we had a really good time.  We’re both homebodies, so it was really great to spend New Years doing something we both enjoy, rather than being out in the cold.  Besides, I have this superstition that what you’re doing on New Years is what you’ll be doing all year long.  It’s the only one I have, but I’m careful with New Years, lest it influence my whole year.  So, we went to Stormwind, had a bit too much (virtual) booze, and stayed for the fireworks at midnight our time (10pm server).  Our best friends also play WoW, so we gathered on the bridge in front of SW and enjoyed a bit of camaraderie for the holiday!

It was really lovely!

2009 wasn’t such a great year, but I’m hopeful for 2010!!

~Gloryee

I warned them!!

December 30, 2009

I’ve always been dps.  I was a mage, then a shadow priest, and now a retribution paladin.  I kick tail, I take names, I beat virtual heads in… you get the picture.  For about two months at the end of t4 I my priest was holy and healed Kara on the weekends, that’s the extent of my experiences outside of my dps comfort zone.  I’m comfortable inside my delusional cozy little box where no one expects me to heal and or tank.  When I want a change of pace, I roll an alt, or play another toon.   What I do not do, ever, is volunteer to heal or tank.  Frankly, I know my limitations.

Sadly, those closest to me don’t seem to believe in limitations because two days ago they convinced me to pry myself out of my comfort zone, equip my so-so healing set, use the talents in the other side of my duel spec, and actually heal something.  Let’s just say, it didn’t go well.  I warned them that I’m not a healer.  I told them we would wipe.  I expressed that I’d rather be beating stuff up.  “No, you’ll be fine,” they said.  Mhmm, suuuuuure I would.

You know, they say when you get your first piece of really good off-set gear that if you have it, eventually, someone will expect you to use it.  We’ve all heard it.  Well, this is the truth.  If you don’t expect to be expected to do something you’re not comfortable with, for the love of the light, don’t pick up the off-spec gear.  This is the reason that even after picking up two decent tanking upgrades, I ultimately decided to vendor them.  Since then, I’ve never taken another tanking upgrade, even when no one else needed it.  If I win them, I vendor them with all the rest of the useless junk from the heroic.  I can’t tell you how many time I’ve passed on the Red Sword of Courage.  Frankly, it’s starting to get just a little bit silly.

Unfortunately, I didn’t have quite that much foresight when it came to healing gear.  I bought the duel spec specialization and talented her ret and holy.  I collected the healing gear, but I never gemmed or chanted it.  I just had it in the bank for the day I got up the courage, or had had too much to drink, and might want to use it.  I didn’t have a libram, but otherwise, my healing set was in tact.  I even got a weapon from regular HoR — two weapons actually!  All in all, my healing set is pretty decent, other than the mail shoulders I was sportin’ (shoulder’s I’ve upgraded recently).  I wasn’t too terrible, though my bonus spell power was just a little over 2,000 and my crit about 26%.  I figured that would be fine, it was just regular Halls of Reflection, it wasn’t even heroic!

Well, you know what I learned?  I suck.  I was pretty sure I did, but now I’m absolutely certain!  Not the awesome kind of “u need mor spirt” faux-suck either, but the real, honest to goodness, I’m-horrible-kind-of-suck.  Everything on the pally healer’s bar is totally foreign to me, with a few exceptions.  My husband is telling me, “you could use this macro, or that macro” but he may as well have been speaking gnomish, because that’s what I heard.  I know pally healers have all sorts of awesome tricks, but I don’t know any of them.  It was terrifying — I was physically, visibly shaking (which is what happens when I get nervous).  I’m sure if you asked any of them, they’d say, “she did really good for her first heal,” I know because that’s what they were saying to me half-way through when I went back to ret and my husband brought his healer to finish the job.

So here’s how it went down.  My group was just four, rather than five, and we were in there to farm the dps cloak off the last boss — two days of farming, we’ve seen one damn cloak!  We got through the four waves of trash and first boss without anyone dying.  They almost died, a lot, but I managed to keep them alive after my husband told me to use beacon on the tank and heal the dps.  Okay, it was terrifying, but we lived.  I ran out of mana a lot, but we lived.  Then, came the first wave to the second boss and we totally wiped.  It was a massacre.  Those ghosts showed us who was boss and guess what, it wasn’t us.  It was at this point that the hubs tells me that if I use sacred shield on the tank, I might have better success.  I did, we lived, and we killed the second boss.   I even managed to get this far without totally bursting into tears, which is a huge feat for me.

We killed the big, mean, bone guy, destroyed our copies, beat on the Lich King a bit, and started the gauntlet to the top so the most powerful sorceress in the world could moan that we’re at a dead-end  (*eyeroll*).  The woman can freeze time, mass portal, and solo the Lich King and she’s worried that we’re at a dead-end.  Fail, Jaina, fail.  So, we start-up the gauntlet, make it to the second wall and wipe.  Hubs, who is normally our healer, was playing his lock, but he was having to use the imp rather than his dps pet and he couldn’t spam seed because the mobs were running rampant and killing everyone, so the Lich King caught up to, and obliterated us.  This happened two more times.  The fourth time we actually made it to the third wall before he killed us all.  I couldn’t heal it, I simply couldn’t do it.  Too much in-coming pain, not enough out-going damage.

Before we went I made my husband promise that if I couldn’t heal it, really couldn’t heal it, that he would come in and do it.  That is exactly what happened.  He took his lock outside, brought his shaman in, and we made it to the end with no problems.  Arthas didn’t even almost catch us.  He’s a better healer than I am, and I do more dps than he was at that point, and it just worked.  Two days before this, he healed regular HoR with the same group, with a migraine.  He had his eyes closed and I called out to him when someone was taking a lot of incoming damage.  His healing instincts are unbelievable.  I’ve never seen a better healer and I don’t just say that because he’s my husband, he really is that amazing.  I, on the other hand, continue to understand my limitations.  I have zero healing instincts.  I just simply don’t think, or react, fast enough to do what’s necessary to be a healer.  Also, I’m really super high-strung and healing makes me even more so.  I fret, I stew, I get mean, I yell at people (sadly, with no kids, the hubs is the only one around), I cry.  It’s not pretty.

So, the healing set is back in the bank and I’m back to face-smashing mode, where I plan to stay for a long, long time.  I told Lovete that I was going to vendor my healing gear, but he convinced me that I should hold onto it.  Rather, I’m going to do some reading up on what it takes to be a pally healer so that next time, I can actually know what the hell I’m doing.  Maybe then it’ll go better… maybe.  For the time being, I’m trying to recuperate from the horror that was my healing.   At least they can’t say I didn’t warn them!

Dueling Evils: Lich King vs. Darth Vader

December 27, 2009

Today, while 4-man farming regular Halls of Reflection with my husband and our best friends, and after seeing the intro a half a dozen times, this question popped into my head: who’s more evil, Darth Vader, or The Lich King? Maybe it was because I love Star Wars, or maybe it’s just seeing Arthas in that huge armor that made me think of Vader, and more than likely it’s a little of both.  I know it sound a little strange, but when I posed the question to my friends, by way of vent, it was met with a whole host of varied responses.  Everyone had a different opinion, some for Arthas, some for Vader, and each person seemed to have their reasons except for my husband who couldn’t quite make up his mind.

Lovete, my husband, said: “First you have to define evil” which is a very typical response from him, he’s very philosophical.  For the purposes of this discussion, evil will mean exactly what everyone thinks evil means: “morally wrong or bad; immoral; wicked; harmful; injurious.”  Pretty standard, and I only include it because it came up and to appease him should he see this.

Okay so, which is it?  Vader or Arthas?  Honestly, the group couldn’t come up with a good answer, but here’s what we did come up with:

Arthas Menethil (The Lich King):

  • Eradicated a whole town full of people, but did wrong for the right reasons.
  • Single-mindedly hunted for something that would turn him evil, falling prey to it’s power.
  • Turned against his own people, burned the ships to keep them from escaping, had the innocent mercenaries helping him killed.
  • Killed his own father
  • Built a huge fortress filled with nasty monsters, from which he controls his huge scourge army.
  • Speculatively killed Bolvar Fordragon and made a lot of girly-gamers cry at the Wrathgate!
  • According to the quest FrostmourneUther the Lightbringer says: “No, girl. Arthas is not here. Arthas is merely a presence within the Lich King’s mind. A dwindling presence…”  Arthas may still be in there, somewhere, redeemable.

Anakin Skywalker (DarthVader):

  • Was prophesied to destroy the Sith, not join them.
  • Single-mindedly hunted for something that would eventually turn him evil, ultimately falling under the spell of the person he thought could give it to him –though to his credit he thought he was doing it for the right reasons.
  • Turned against his own people and helped to hunt down and destroy (almost) every last Jedi in the known universe!
  • Killed the younglings and made Natalie Portman cry (ha!)
  • Tried to kill his mentor, which he would later succeed at doing… sorta.
  • Killed his wife… sorta.
  • Helped to build a space-station rumored to be the “ultimate power in the universe.”
  • Tried to kill his own children… more than once.
  • Is redeemed and returns to the force when Luke sees something good still in him.

They’re very broad lists, but not everyone’s a lore junkie, whether Star Wars or Warcraft.  Either way, you see the point and the reasons we just simply couldn’t decide.  Of course, Lovete and I are much bigger Star Wars fans than our friends, who were more on Arthas’s side.  I think I’m personally leaning towards Vader, I mean, he killed the younglings for cryin’ out loud!

In the end, we ran Halls of Reflection about 10 times and walked away with half the stuff we went in there for.  I got the Tapestry of the Frozen Throne from the chest at the end.  My best friend’s husband, Anddrol, got his newly-80 DK the Mourning Malice.  Two more cloaks like the one I got tonight, and we can call it quits and move on.   In the mean time, we’ve got the regular HoR run down to an art, finishing it in about 20 minutes per run, and though we’re all getting pretty tired of it, mindlessly killing waves of undead has made for some interesting conversation!

Re-Introduction…

December 23, 2009

The first entry is always the hardest (except maybe for the about page), but in this case, I think it’s appropriate to begin with a confession.  Who doesn’t like those?  Okay, here goes: this is not my first WoW blog.  I also write Electronic Escape, which began as a mage blog, was taken down, returned as a priest blog, and has sat dormant for the last several months while I finished up my undergraduate education.  Whew, what a trouble maker that blog has been!  So, now that I’m done with my BA and am onto graduate school, it’s time for me to get back to my two favorite things, World of Warcraft and blogging, but with EE’s somewhat tumultuous history, I feel a bit awkward about writing there you see.  This blog, therefore, is my fresh start and with a fresh start comes the inevitable, a new character.

Her name is Gloryee and she’s a ret paladin!   She makes her home on Silvermoon, where she’s a low-ranking guild member with Summit, and enjoys nothing but free time.  You see, Gloryee’s not a raider, she’s “Friends & Family” because my husband is the guild leader.  I’m free to use my play time as I see fit, which usually entails mining, herbing, running random dungeons, and the occasional 10-man on the weekends.  This doesn’t mean, though, that I wasn’t a raider once.   Sadly, I’ve turned in my raider’s union card and called it quits.  It’s just not for me anymore.

When I was raiding, I was doing so first as a Gnome mage (t4, t5, & t6) and then as a Draenei shadow priest (t7).  I still play both toons from time to time, but not nearly enough; the two of them have become more useful for their professions than for their pew-pew.  That said, I’m thinking that I’ll resurrect one of them through the random LFG, but won’t be doing so any time soon.  For now, my first and only love is Gloryee and if you’ve ever played a ret pally, you understand why — my goodness can they clean house!

I’m a crazed achievement junkie, but I don’t obsess over having a ton of achievement points.  Sounds like a contradiction, doesn’t it?   What I mean is, I go for achievements until they’re done and move onto the next.  My priest is a Loremaster, something I plan to get for Gloryee, when I recover from the last one.  My next immediate goal is to attempt to solo the lvl 70 dungeons.  It’s something a clothie could never do, but something I feel could be done with a paladin.  So, I’m going to attempt it!  Just the dungeons though, not the raids, thinking I might need another person or two for Gruul, Mag, & Kara. ;)

On that note, I’m off to work on my herbalism skill.  May all your hits be crits!!

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