All The Small Things: World of Warcraft Content

Patch

Deliberately or not, this quest goal is totally giving away Blizzard’s complete helplessness in Draenor with providing gaming content that is actually PLAYED. It’s like they wrote – in a quest – we have nothing to offer for you, so cancel your subscription until Patch 6.2.

Re-reading my blog yesterday, I’ve come across this late-Pandaria blog post and saw what I was doing. Even before Draenor’s launch I was running through Siege of Orgrimmar, dressing up my alts. But that’s not the point, cause I’m running raids now as well. Important thing is: I always had something to do when waiting for my dear LFRs.

The Small Things.

A Daily Blessing

Back in Pandaria, we had this amazing feature: daily quests. We probably didn’t understand how cool this was – but it’s time to admit it now: these dailies were our bread and butter.

You had those factions: Celestials, Shado Pan, Lotus, Tillers, Klaxxi, raiding Alliance/Horde gangs at Krasarang, raiding parties at the Isle of Thunder. And let us see what dailies provided:

  • You had a clear understanding that you gain some fixed reputation through doing quests for them. So you could plan your schedule, choosing to boost some reputation for this or that faction. You may have done all factions in one day – or repeatedly grind only one.
  • Diversity. Now if you remember, all the daily hubs were DIFFERENT. At Krasarang you just grind the other faction. At Lotus you have ninja training, wall-rolling, cannon-shooting, cosplaying Indiana Jones. At Tillers you have cooking and farming. At Celestials you had martial art encounters. All the quest hubs, despite having some obligatory “kill 20 whats-its” quests, had someting interesting to offer.
  • And this gave you choice. This gave you reason to move around the continent. If you choose to make all the dailies in one day, you have to visit ALL THE ZONES OF PANDARIA.
  • At the same time: when doing dailies, you were unlocking NEW CONTENT. New areas, new characters, and story moved on. It unveiled a huge deal of backstory and lore, leading you to all the raids: Mogushan Vaults, Heart of Fear, Isle of Thunder. Through dailies and accompanying lore quests you got such a solid lore background! You were acquainted with what was going on in the raid and why you are there. It’s not just a “big boss bug with four legs” – you grew, nurtured and fed one of the “bugs” yourself. You know everything about them by the time you even step into Heart of Fear.
  • Each faction unlocked some good rewards and you may have also chosen to select this or that daily hub for this reward.

What was the reason to replace the nice daily hubs by “grind-me-this-area” – for 60 gold and 800 apexis – I don’t know. You have no choice where to go. You may or may not gain any reputation points. You are not even able to do any zone achievements! As soon as the bar is filled – it’s over until next time!

Valor Points 

Remember the first thing players did at level 90 after login? It was queue up for needed LFR and at the same time random dungeon and random scenario. Reason: it was the easy way not only to while away your time waiting for LFR (Queues took: Scenario – 10 seconds, Dungeon – 15 minutes, LFR – 40 minutes), but it also gave you Valor points.

With Valor points you could upgrade and buy gear. Dungeons and scenarios were quick and funny, and rewarded a big pile of Valor.

Now Blizzard are wondering why people don’t go to Dungeons anymore, once they got their gear. Because there’s no need! Give us the carrot, and people will go for dungeons again and again.

When they cancelled Valor in Pandaria before Draenor launch – I waited in Dungeon queue for 2 hours, and there was no group. With Valor, waiting for dungeon group took 10-15 minutes. Questions?

“In the past, you kept running Mists dungeons, which probably overstayed their welcome a little bit,
but you kept running them for valor points a year-plus into the expansion.”

Ion Hazzikostas

He’s right – it may have not been the good option to run one and the same dungeons and scenarios over and over. But again, we had an option. we could have got those Valors through dailies, raids and we may have not done this at all. We chose to do so through dungeons and scenarios.

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The major problem is that there are no more “small things” to do while waiting for raids. 

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Now – in Garrison – when you accept missions and send the guys for the new missions, do Salvage Yard, do workorders (routine!) – it’s like: what now?

You literally don’t go anywhere and you don’t see any other people at your Garrison. There’s literally nothing to motivate you doing things outside of the walls. And that is discouraging you from active playing.

Compared to Pandaria, imagine you did your farm things and you just sit there waiting for raids. Option being: grind 100 virmen or 50 elite mogu. That’s Draenor now. 

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Solutions

  • Give us daily hubs – so that rep grind became more focused.
  • Give us daily hubs – so that we had a real choice of where to go and what to do.
  • Give us flights to bring back the joy of exploring the world.
  • Give us Valor points or their substitute – so that content became replayable.

Give us the Small Things to get busy with between raids.

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Waiting for LFR groups yesterday, I found a long-forgotten Druid’s spell which teleports me to Moonglade. And I found myself role-playing with my Night Elf Mayluna, walking among buildings and bridges and talking to druids there. THAT was fun.

WoWScrnShot_051815_003018

Undead Decomposed: Enter Tauren

For all this time I wasn’t happy with animations of my Undead warrior – Rottenshield. A warrior, obviously wearing plate armor and heavy swords. She spends 50% of batlle doing FLIP JUMPS. I was always like: how?

When I learnt of an option making her Gladiator – thus wearing shield – I thought it would settle her a bit. Nah, didn’t work. While shield slams are performed on ground, the other hits are still flip-flops.

– Tight-rope walkers and acrobats
Mangojerry and Rumpleteaser, “The Cats”
A.L.Webber

With the next cleansing of Highmaul after vacation I came to the idea that I still hate this vibe. In 1 day I made this decision to put my dear Undead Rottenshield to rest in peace. The replacement was chosen at once – my Horde party was joined by hulk Tauren Warrior.

So I ordered the race change in the yesterday’s morning. By the way, the service includes complete appearance rebuild and name change – it’s in fact the new character creation screen. I’m glad I hadn’t pay for gender and name separately.

And I spent 8 hours at work inventing a new name for the character. That’s how serious I am! I serfed Google maps of Latin America and Canada for inspiration (Tauren feel good with Mexican or Native American names), websites and name generators. Eventually I came home, looked into the eyes of my new Tauren and saw it didn’t fit.  Rolling few German phonemes this and that way, it became:

GOTTENBAR

Gottenbar

I did a test drive for him at Highmaul for few stones left, and the vibe is perfect. The bulky bulldozer fits right in with these shield blows and sword strikes.

Now, do they make plate armor of druidic attunement?.. I found this shield with leaves and will give him an axe or a hammer, but the rest seems hard to find.

P.S. As Rottenshield was Enchanter and Tailor – now I wonder: how my Tauren will cope with thimbles, threads and needles? Ah, whatevs.

WoW Vacationed and Patch 6.2 Thoughts

Vacating!

Yes, when you have first 4 days off at National Holiday 1 and then shortly 3 days off at National Holiday 2 – you can’t help planning your vacation in between so that you get 11 work-free days in a row.

This trip of mine included 5 countries of Northern Europe – Denmark being the only one I haven’t seen yet. And I didn’t take my laptop with me, which meant I had a WoW vacation as well.

Grinding!

Vacation helps much giving you a break as you’re grinding one and the same content with 10 toons. Having finished her Chapter 3, my main, Gnome Ice Mage Micromantica, was put into standby mode. The other 10 are obliged to feverishly grind Highmaul and then – Blackrock Foundry for Abrogator Stones and Runes followed.

Well, each step takes you 4-5 weeks only. Almost all ten are over 100/125 of the Stones step – and with tomorrow’s cooldown I will be able to fight Garona and move my chess pieces into Blackrock Foundry. I’m surprised that waiting for Highmaul LFR takes me only 15-40 minutes, even if though most people must have moved forward and are whining there’s nothing to do in Draenor. Are they doing Stones and alts as well?

It’s really cool how this scheme of mine works. When you go for Stones or Runes – you get a reward for every single boss, so you don’t even CARE about loot (the drop is still the worst). I’ve upgraded some slots, like Rottenshield’s Axe became 620 -> 640, but I didn’t even notice this. The same will be work for BRF. Hunting for Runes, you won’t even notice how your gear becomes upgraded top-notch and even with those tier bonuses.

Finishing the Job!

There are few things in Draenor except going epic ring path that I feel probably need to be done.

Stables: these quests are really fun. Mayluna does these dailies, they are nice, easy and give this progress feeling.

Reputations: haven’t grinded a single one of them. Need to – which leads us to Patch 6.2. when they have this rep-boost events.

Archaeology: Micromantica goes for digging safari now and then. Surprisingly it’s very fast even without flying in Draenor.

Daily questing achievements: you know, kill 100 trees and fish out 20 orcs. I feel that they won’t need any very special effort, so they’re possible. Already having some, but more to go.

Obtain all Toys from Dungeons: need to be done once not to return back.

Patching 6.2.!

Probably it’s coming in June (I would prefer LATE June).

Long story short: I’m happy with the new content coming. Lore continues. I’m not happy that much of it if not all will be given in a way of Garrison dailies in Tanaan. That’s a way to fel pit, dear Blizzard.

The perfect combination of giving away new content was Dread Wastes in Pandaria. Remember? You had this Klaxxi Paragons storyline, but you couldn’t do them in one day. You should have gotten reputation first: Free more Paragons – do more dailies – get some reputation – get access to the new Paragons and new story. This was amazing how you got back for new dailies and at the same time you got new lore.

Shipping!

Giving away this naval idea in Draenor is imho bad. I would of course prefer this laid off to Eye of Azshara or whichever next content gone to seas of Azeroth. This would have been logical, themed and considering all Garrison mistakes. I like this “missions” thing, but I would prefer having a fleet of 5 pieces at max, not milions of followers. For example, 1 Juggernaught/Battleship, 3 smaller Fighter ships and one oil Tanker for resources. Then you really care about them, and don’t waste so much time for “missions” thing instead of actual playing. WoW is MMORPG, not some browser mini-game.

That’s all for Patch 6.2. that I have to say now.

Altoholism Has NO Cure. 

Eldrigar the Orc Fire Mage, Mentaho the Tauren Feral Druid and Morgenston the Dwarf Shadow Priest is what I’ve started yesterday at another realm. The guys explore these specs that I haven’t played before and slowly enjoying older questlines. They are meant to give me some rest from raid grinding and peacefully enjoy this leveling, upgrading and discovering thing that I lack so much now.

Death of Draenor: Rumble and Silence

As of my latest plan – I follow it and there’s really nothing new to report.

Micromantica blasted this Chapter III achievement today’s morning – and I leave these following Garona quests as a sweetest piece of cherry pie for the evening. Sadly it’s the only piece of lore left.

Foundry

Others are not doing professions or anything at all. What I do is carefully cleaning away Highmaul cooldowns for Abrogator Stones (currently 37 to 83 out of 125 among my 10 alts). Waiting for raids, I only have desire to clean up Garrison missions and upgrading followers stuff. Having learnt that building a wharf will require Garrison resources, I focus on collecting them as well and not wasting in vain.

Life played a bad joke for Blizzard. They told us that Garrison will play an important role in our Draenor campaign. I don’t think they meant that it will mean THIS much. People are actually sitting there. There’s no actual need to do ANYTHING outside Garrison. Well you could go grind, but you know what grind means.

I hate the thing when the only way to raise reputation is merely killing mobs. I hate the thing when you have only your daily  achievements to do – those blues like go for 10th time to Magnarok and kick goren eggs. Damn isn’t it fun?

SILENCE! (c) Ko’ragh

At Pandaria, I had some things to do even before Draenor launch, even for my main. Now I have my Garrison.

Two greatest forces of Azeroth and their greatest heroes – are sitting inside Lunarfall and Frostwall villages. They are stuffing their bellys with fried talbuk flanks and drink beer all day long. For the Horde, it’s too cold to go outside. For the Alliance, even the beauty of nearby Draenic villages is not enough to overcome laziness. Local slaves bring you everything. They do your professions, they feed you, they bring you stuff from world and raids, they tie your shoes and clean your teeth. The heroes are just lazily trying on clothes the slaves bring them. 645? Meh. Goes to vendor. Next time bring me smth. of worth, you Ner’zhul’s ex.

Despite that you occasionally hear rumbling from Highmaul top floors or clanging from inside Blackrock Foundry, Draenor is silent now.

All evil forces are defeated. Botani are reduced to small garden playgrounds and are busy with goren and magnaron. Arakkoa’s Skyreach went shutdown. Iron Horde camps were raised to the ground along with mounted patrols. Demon presence in Shattrath was exterminated. Clefthoofs and talbuk are peacefully walking in Nagrand and no one cares for their skins or flesh. Fish schools are multiplying – there’s no one to catch them. Winds are howling through Draenor slopes and valleys and they bring no sound.

Draenor grows peaceful, wild and dead.

Lack of Content: Curing Weariness

Let’s face it: with my recent activities I have reached the point when I didn’t want even to login WoW for a while.

  • Professions: I have learned all recipes and even so for Melaris, my recently capped Death Knight
  • Questing: I’ve done everything Draenor could offer
  • Garrison Building and Reputation achievements: requires some severe grinding – not an option.
  • Raids: with all my toons at Blackrock Foundry, previous weeks I found myself frantically raiding all the same LFR cooldowns, few in a row for different toons – with lowest gear drop. That’s the thing that sucked all the blood and desire from my veins, like the most effective vampire. 

That was my big mistake.

There is no movement forward! When you run one and the same paths for zillionth time, and you even kill one and the same mob trash and bosses even few times a day, you expect some loot to drop. You should be granted for your efforts. When you have only crappy rune droppings instead of gear… And you literally don’t have anything else to do in game – well.

That’s it. Having my toons  between 645 and 655 ilvl, I take a step back. 

I found this carrot for me: it’s the epic ring quest.

Those stones and runes drop from EVERY boss, they’re random amount (it’s exciting), and they give you this feeling of moving forward, receiving some award for running raids.

That means my toons stepping back into ogre lands and into Highmaul for magic stones. And that means only Micromantica kicking Blackrock Foundry now (2/3 seals).

The trick is: you change your focus from wanting gear – and not getting it – to small but constant progress to the epic ring goal.

So, now gear drop DOESN’T matter this much. Frustration to be damped.

Progress: Channelling

I think I’ve discovered myself a new funny thing to do: Transmogrification.

Last week, I’ve completed the Firebat set for my hunter Salash:

Salash Mog

This week, with my Gladiator Warrior getting her few (ugly) items from LFRs, I polished Rottenshield’s looks.

I think it always starts with shoulders. You get one, and they look so badass that you just build up the set from top to heels.

This time was no exception. I got herself greenish shoulder plates from Salvage Yard and I thought how cool will it be to make her a real ROTTEN warrior who hails right away from Undercity’s sewers and meat labs.

So, the chosen theme was: ACID SEWER GREENS.

Rottenshield1

The shoulders obviously remind of the past before The Third War, when Rottenshield was still Human. They were obviously forged by blacksmiths of Lordaeron, but got rusty and green in the sewers of Undercity.

All the green plates, which she also dug out of Undercity’s armory, needed some extra element. And it’s brown leather straps and bandages all over the body and legs. They hold my Undead together, add this not-so-shiny bright feeling and also the vibe of mummified undead. Epic!

Rottenshield3

Well, it was a bit more complex with weapon and shield. The sword must have obviously be moderately long, with a long handle and of course knight-straight, not curved or monstrous. It wasn’t very hard to find one of the many knightly blades. I also enchanted it now with venomous green glow (unlike white/blue glow at screenshot).

The shield just had to be big enough and green. So the only option that I found has this troll jungle vibe. But it fits my Undead nevertheless, going well with leather bandage elements:

Rottenshield2

Except mogging, there are few things to boast.

  1. Melaris has finished Loremaster main quest chains for Draenor and grinds Highmaul for gear and dailies for Apexis (the Ring).
  2. Everyone else is gearing up in Blackrock Foundry – successfully.
  3. Micromantica completed the Dragon Soul raid for the first time!!! Was epic piece of lore. I loved it.
  4. I’m rounding up many Garrison building achievements. I did achievements and upgraded Lumber Mill Lv3, Gnomish/Goblin Engineering shack Lv3, now working on Stables and Fishing.
  5. My second ever time in Firelands raid, Ragnaros dropped me this:

FireHawk

I guess it’s pretty cool, cause raiding mounts are normally rare and desired by everyone. I’m not a maniac of collecting mounts, but I was happy to add this to my collection.

Transmog: Need A Light?

I’ve already boasted everywhere, but not in my blog. That I’m gonna fix now!

I didn’t really appreciate gear transmogrification for a long time, I was just gearing up and happy with my current armor. I liked how it transformed from simpletons of first levels to bright caleidoscope of Burning Crusade to grim and brutal Northrend to scorched Cataclysm to curly Pandarian armor and weapons.

What made me mogging is when I found a really cool piece – for example, a kilt-skirt for Schlitzchen the Shaman or Mayluna the Druid. Armored underpants or cool swords of course also went to the bank slots.

WoWScrnShot_101913_203625

I didn’t use these pants but I KNEW I must keep them xD 

Before Draenor, I used mogging only in few cases, mostly for weapons. I was never a mogging set-chaser. Normally some slots were transmogged into some of the items I already had and kept.

And so, now we got Draenor. And Draenor became infamous with presenting the ugliest armor sets in whole WoW. Seriously, be it questing items, dungeon items or raid items, it’s rarely when I want to wield a weapon or put the armor pieces on.

Thanks to Salvage Yard, I began to try some old clothes on, and soon I discovered that I rather prefer to sit at an Auction and dig through possible items to wear than wear any of Draenor stuff.

And that finally led me to collecting my first intentional mogging set:

SATANIC FIREBAT OF DUROTAR

Salash Mog

Shoulder: Brittle Flamereaver Pauldrons. It has this stalker’s vibe, it has 4 engraved hordish faces, 2 burning. First I got them from Salvage Yard, and these shoulders required many red and flaming stuff from AH.

Chest: Double Link Tunic. I chose a black one although I tried many reddish ones, but they were pinkish rather than flaming. I needed the torso to be calm rathere than bright and eccentric.

Belt: Heavy Scorpid Belt. It’s also black, because I wanted to reduce the flames a bit in the middle. Not a clown here xD

Gloves: Battleforge Gauntlets – Legs: Blood Knight Greaves – Feet: Blood Knight Boots. These 3 go well together and actually make me a Firebat. These boot-tops and glove-tops are purely hunter’s vibe, I like them very much.

Gun: Taoren, The Soul Burner. I never could imagine that I would somewhen wear this Sha-touched too-bright weapon, but I kept it in the bank. You just don’t throw away stuff like this. And wow, I found the use for it! It fitted perfectly.

RESULT

I think Salash now will be very noticeable among fellow LFRs. She’s all stylish and flaming-bright, with much aristocratic black in her gear. There’s also a decent amount of sexiness: I suppose, there’s not that much body exposed to call her a slut – or you know, sometimes you put on armor underpants and bra and then your toon freezes at Frostwall Garrison or Icecrown xD. And at the same time she’s not packed in armor like a canned sprat, revealing she’s a woman :=) It’s a nice result.

Salash Mog2

Salash Mog1

 I’m definitely gonna repeat the mogging experiment with other toons.