Changes are coming, and not just to Azeroth

Once upon A time I started reading WoW related blogs.

I did not do this because I suddenly decided to wander the wilds of the interwebs looking for fun and interesting things to entertain me. I did it because I got my ass handed to me in the first instance I ever tried to run. I wrote about it in Everything I need to know about WoW I learned in the Barrens, and how that run colored my expectations of Pugs for a long long time.

Actually, come to think about it, that pug is not even in my top 10 for suckage anymore. Live and learn I guess.

Anyhow, that pug is where I discovered the awesomeness that was a well played vanilla WoW Hunter. It made such an impression that I abandoned my Druid and rolled a Hunter myself.

I played a Hunter. Ok, I won’t lie, a series of Hunters, ever since.

Right now on my various servers I have eight or nine of them, including three at the level cap and one over seventy.

Lets Just say that I am acquainted with Hunters and Huntering.

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In the early days of my Huntering  journey I was told of a few places to go for information about Hunters and their pets. Back when you had to go out and tame beasts to learn the skills to go back and teach your main pet. I began reading Petopia and Big Red Kitty. Studying those two I learned quite a bit. Then I started making my way down BRK’s blogroll looking for other sites.

Many of the sites I found there I still follow today, almost three expansions later.

Temerity Jane.

Need More Rage.

The Big Bear Butt.

The World of Matticus.

Aspect of the Hare.

There were a good many more that have since gone dark, and a good many more that I discovered since, but those stand out as the ones that have been on my reader the longest.

Eventually I even went on to become a blogger myself and started writing here, nearly two and a half years gone by now.

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I wrote about what interested me, and still do. In the early days it was all about leveling through Outlands and getting ready to start Karazhan. Then it was getting ready for Wrath and gearing up for Northrends challenges. Lately it’s just been quiet as my enthusiasm for the game has waned.

Too much waiting for Cataclysm and not enough living in Wrath I suppose.

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One thing that has been a constant for me in the last four years or so though has been my love for the Hunter class.

Through the days of sucking so bad that Blizz had to bribe them to take us to Molten Core with Tranq shot to the booming days of the BM steady shot macro I Huntered on.

From a time when chain trapping was a rare mark of skill to the time Blizzard broke it so badly I quit even trying to use it I Huntered on.

In early Wrath they came out swinging the great nerf bat. My poor Beastmaster Hunter came out battered and bruised, crippled on the meters and once again not welcome in a group. I learned to play as Survival and Huntered on.

Then came 4.0.1, and with it a complete redesign of my class.

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I have respecced, and reworked, and murdered target dummies till I see them im my sleep. I have gone and tamed new beasts, and gone crawling through dungeons. I simply can’t do it any more.

I am putting my gun over the mantle, and putting my pets out to pasture.

My Hunters have changed so much from where they started that they are no longer the class I fell in love with. They seem more like a ranged Rogue to me, and I never really cared for Rogues. (no offence)

Every other time I just shook it off and Huntered on.

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Not this time.

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This time I am going back to my roots.

Back to where it all started.

Back to my Druid.

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The guides and equipment lists and such I normally come out with around expansion time may or may not be happening this time. I honestly don’t know.

What I can tell you is that they won’t be coming from a Hunters point of view any more.

I am not even sure at this point that I will stick to my Druid, but I am sure that I am done Huntering.

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Peace friends,

Dech

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My thoughts on Blizzcon

For starters, no I was not able to attend. In fact, I did not even get the live feed like I did last year.

For that I am profoundly grateful. Not that I did not attend mind you, I would truly have loved meeting up with everyone that was there. It would have been a blast.

Hell, I like the idea of a meetup enough that I might just go to a midnight launch instead of doing the direct download just to do so.

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I am grateful I did not spend the money to watch an event where the keynote presentation was about what it means to be a geek. Where I would have to spend hundreds of dollars and hours in line to get told these amazing truths about how playing with Transformers as a kid molded me into the mighty geek I am today.

There was very very little information to be had about things I care about within the game. I know I would have had a blast if I had been there, actually hanging out with some of the folks I only know through the web. On the other hand I would have felt kinda cheated by the live stream. To be honest, I was fine reading coverage of it on Twitter and various blogs in near-real time.

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When I was thinking about this I decided that I might very well try to get out there next year. Well, that’s  assuming I actually adapt to the post 4.0 Hunter and start having fun again before I give up completely.

If I go though, I won’t be going there for Blizzcon.

I would be going for the meet-ups and such that happen afterwards. If I want to see the action I will order the live stream and watch it from the comfort of my hotel room. It’s far cheaper, I won’t have to stand in any lines, and I am always guaranteed a seat where my 5’6″ self can actually see whats going on.

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More likely I would spend the days nappping and the nights out meeting people.

Thats what I would be taking the vacation to do anyway.

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Wtf is it?

I followed this around Dalaran for a good five minutes while waiting for my Headless Horseman queue to pop.

Click to enlarge

Random shadows walking about? 

Click to enlarge

Don’t shadows usually have critters between them and the sun?

Things that make you go Hmmmm.

The long walk has ended

Just a few nights ago Giligan had felt that all was in balance. Things were right in the world.

He was far more wrong than he knew.

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For many days there had been a great feeling of impending doom. Rumors coming into the dockside taverns of Stormwind told of strange things happening in the great sea between Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms. Ships and crews takeing sail and never returning. Vessels found adrift and whole with not a soul onboard, but meals on the table as though they simply disappeared. 

Worse yet were those that returned to port crewed by madmen. Poor bastards, driven mad by whatever they had seen, and beyond the healing of a forest of Druids.

He did not need rumors to tell him of the distant rumbles coming from far away, like memories of earthquakes. He could feel it in root and branch when he took the form of the Ent, and sense it like a predator waiting to pounce when he took the form of the panther.

He did not understand why there was discontent on the wind, yet the birds of the sky told him to be wary of impending doom.

Somehow hehad not thought that all the signs had pointed to this though.

The day Elune turned her back on the Druids of the leaf.

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When he took up the cause, all those years ago, to go to war in Elunes name he had been asked to make a choice.

He knew what he truly wanted to do was to heal. To heal a land wracked with war and disaster, and to heal the broken bodies of the soldiers injured fighting the good fight. He wanted to be a protector, not a killer.

He chose the way of the leaf.

He chose it to save others, to heal them, to protect them. It was just his nature. 

And for many years all was right in the world.

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Waving his branches he had taken up the call, fighting through the long forgotten dungeons of Azeroth, the demon infested hell hole that was Outlands, and the scourge riddled frozen wastes of Northrend.

From the haunted halls of Karazahn to Ice Crown Citadel itself he did all that was asked of him, and more. What had he done to cause Elune to punish him so? What had they all done?

When it was overe he felt as though she had reached into his soul and pulled out the parts that mattered.

The path of the tree was torn from him, and judging from the screams he heard echoing through Moonglade he was far from the only one.

Eyes blurred with the shock of it he saw movement in the sky overhead.

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A great brown eagle began circling Moonglade, calling out to them. “To me Druids! Come to me!” It then wheeled off in the direction of the clearing down near the lake.

Still reeling from shock Giligan followed.

Standing there on an outcropping of rock was Arch-Druid Staghelm, waiting for them.

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He stood quietly as the Druids slowly filtered into the clearing, noting the shocked expressions and vacant looks on many. When they were all assembled he began to speak.

“Grieve not Friends. The way of the leaf is changing, but it is still there.” he said, softly.

“All the paths are changing, the world is a fluid place. Things do not stay the same forever, nor should they. It is all part of the circle of life.”

“We must adapt to the changes in the world, not try to force the world to stay the same. This is the lesson Elune teaches us with these changes.”

“Go now friends. Ponder the future, think on the circle of life and where you fit inside it.  Then, and only then, should you choose the path that you will next walk.”

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Returning to the form of flight the Arch-Druid then flew away and left them.

Slowly, in ones and twos, the dozens of Druids that had gathered there walked away. The headed to quiet places to ponder Staghelm’s words. A quiet descended upon Moonglade, interrupted only by the occasional gentle trembling of the ground, the memory of another far away earthquake.

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A day and a night passed as Giligan sat upon the lakeshore lost in thought. The world around him was full of life and motion, yet he was still. Nothing but the sound of his breathing showed that he still lived.

Abruptly he stood, startling a nearby squirrel. Face set he walked back to the cluster of buildings down the coast of the lakeshore.

That is how he found himself standing there talking to the teacher.

“I sense a great upheaval coming.” said Giligan. “Teach me in the ways of the Bear, that I might be a protector once again.” 

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As the words rolled off his tongue he knew he had once again found his place.

His long walk in the way of the leaf had ended.

With this new beginning he would take up a new path.

He would walk the way of the Bear.

The circle was now complete.

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Like Science, only completely different.

Today Chawa from the Wayward Initiave asked simply, Patch 4.0.1 is here, what did you do first?

I’ll answer that.

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I logged in, turned around, and checked on my experiment.

You see, I had about a hundred and thirty triumph emblems laying about on Dekado. He already has all but one emblem upgrade he could use (a Str and Hit neck I kept for the Hit. I’ll be trying out reforging on it).

Anyhow, I saw that the price of Heirlooms was going to be about two to three times that of level 80 emblem gear once the Justice Point system went into effect. Thats when I started scheming.

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Knowing that I had enough emblems to buy one piece of Tier 10 I chose to pass on it and take a chance at nearly a full set. Instead I went on right before the servers went down and bought a pair of Swift Hand of Justice trinkets.

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I figured that one of two things would happen, but I was wrong.

Either I would be able to sell the trinkets back for their new cost, effectively tripling the number of Justice Points I got from the conversion, or it would not allow it to trade back at all.

No matter which way it went I would win. On one hand I would het better gear now for my Hunter, and on the other I would get a pair of trinkets for any toon I ever level after this.

That much at least I was right about.

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You see, when i went to do the sellback it was going to let me. There was just one problem.

It would not give me Justice Points back, it would give me the gold equivalent of the Emblems of Heroism it was bought with.

Such is life I suppose, either way I came out ahead.

I’ll probably get a lot more use from the trinkets anyhow. It’s not like I am a hopeless altoholic or anything.

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Other than that I just said hello to my guildies and logged for the night, helped my son with his math homework, and went to bed.

After helping him I was too mathed out to try and respec all my toons. 

Maybe I’ll get around to that today.

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The timer is running

Tic

Tic

Tic

Can you hear it?

With the announced deployment of patch 4.0.1 tomorrow, somewhere a clock is running.

It’s counting down to the start of the world events that will precede the return of Deathwing.

Who wants to hazard a guess when it will start?

I am hoping for soon.

One regret

Cataclysm is coming soon.

As in sixty-two days from now soon.

I have what mats I plan to use stockpiled.

I have the heirlooms I may or may not use ready to go.

Lets just say I am looking forward to the Cataclysm and poised to enjoy the world events leading up to it.

I am ready but for one thing, something that likely will not happen. I would love to see Arthas defeated.

That will be the one bad thing about Wrath, just as it was the one bad thing about both previous expansions. Since I am not able to devote the time to progression I don’t get to see the HMFIC of each expansion defeated.

I see four options.

  1. Don’t worry about it. let it be like I did in years past.
  2. Attempt to raid much more frequently over the next two months and hope for the best.
  3. Use the money I have gotten from being good at the auction house to buy a Kingslayer run from a topguild.
  4. Come back at 85 when people are running ICC for the achievements.

In reality the most likely candidate is number 4.

Then again 3 is sounding more and more appealing on Alliance side. If the price was right I would do it. The guild I am in there is running hardmodes with the few raiders that are left active, and I have not the gear, experience, or time to do that right.

Then again, I wonder if I brought up the idea of a Kingslayer run or two for those that don’t have it if they would put something together.

I honestly wish I had never transferred my characters back to thier old server now. Unfortunately others paid good money to transfer over to where I now am, so barring me paying to transfer 13 level 80’s (mine plus those that followed me over) I am kinda stuck where I am.

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Horde side is a different story. There, I actually raid with friends. I will get Kingslayer with them or not at all.

My runs with <The Zug Initiave> have been some of the most fun I have had in-game in a long time.

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I have gotten to a point in the game where I am even seriously considering rerolling when the expansion gets here. Not deleting my 80’s mind you, just rerolling. Oddly enough, if I reroll it will probably be another Hunter or two.

I figure if I reroll Hunters I can essentially skip the Outlands/Northrend grind by leveling up to 60 with the new ones and 80-85 with the two I already have. Hell, if I end up preferring the animations of a different race I can always just race change my 80’s before leveling them to 85.

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I’m still here.

Hello?

*Pokes blog*

Is this thing still on?

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I know I have said I plan to take a break from writing about WoW, and that is true. It’s not even so much that I don’t want to write, as that I have very little left to say.

Wrath of the Litch King is two years old. Not much new to say about it.

Arthas is still the grown up version of an emo punk ass teenager that went wrong. Hell, he probably sits on the frozen throne and cuts himself while telling his daddy’s ghost “Its all your fault.” 

I would love to go in and bitch slap him. Unfortunately that is reserved for the chosen ones that have a high enough gear score. A number unreachable without running ICC in the first place.

Gear Score, how I loathe thee. A pox upon your creator and all those that  judge the worth of others using you.

Heroics are boring AOE fests that return not much more than emblems I no longer need. Unless of course I am on my Druid. On him I have actually been booted out of LFD pugs, as a healer mind you, for only having a 3.1k GS. Yep, I’m in blues, last I checked heroics is where I am supposed to go to get my gear…

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I went and puttered around a bit on the PTR, but there is really not much different. I still target something and push buttons until it falls over and gives me loot. I don’t really notice whether they call it mana or focus or cherry kool-aid for that matter. The end result is the same, it just changes my rotation slightly.

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How about Cataclysm Beta you say?

Well, there is a lot a could say about this topic, but I think I will leave it to rest.

If you want to hear about that there are plenty of folks out there writing about it, I simply am not one of them.

 We will just go with I have had bad luck getting invited into the Beta and leave it at that.

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On a completely unrelated side note, Blizzard did revamp Real ID with two of the three features I asked for in my rant against the program. You are now able to opt out of both the Facebook access portion, and the friends of friends portion.

Now if they would just add in an invisible option to the three existing statuses we would be golden. I do use it now though, just on a very limited scale.

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I guess the whole point of this post is to let the few who still wander past know that the blog is not dead.

I have merely gone into a boredom induced hibernation.

I will be back, as obnoxious as ever, once Cataclysm hits. (December 7th if Blizzards current plans hold true)

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*goes back to impatiently waiting for a Beta invite, or the world event to start.*

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