#WoWscreenshotaday – A Hallows End Alphabet

For the first time ever, I’ve actually managed to finish one of Tycertank’s screenshot a day prompts. Clearly having it being Hallows End helped me focus or perhaps it was the nebulousness of the prompts themselves which inspired me. Either way, without any further ado.. here are the rest of my screenshots for October and have a happy Halloween!

 

O is for Owl

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P is for Pumpkins

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Q is for Queen

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R is for Rider of Blood

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S is for Skeletons cooking in a pot

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T is for Tattiebogle

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U is for Undead

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V is for Vile

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W is for Witch

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X is for X’avius

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Y is for Yogg-Saron

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Z is Zealots

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One Giant Pumpkin wearing a Witch’s Hat

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Two blood tinged pillars of crystal

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Three impaled Orcs

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Four Hanging Skulls
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Five scary children wearing pointy hats

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Books for Halloween – My Favourite Spooky Reads

As autumn bleeds into winter, my thoughts tend to turn to dark and scary things. By five at night, we’re already starting to lose the light and by six it’s pitch black outside with the street lamps throwing pockets of orange light into the shadows. Inside where it’s warm and light, I like to sit by the window and read about ghosts, vampires and the monsters under the bed (although given all the other stuff under ours, it would be a very small monster, pocket sized in fact). I don’t really have Halloween movies, although I do tend to like watching Sleepy Hollow and the Nightmare Before Christmas around now, instead I have Halloween books that I pull out and scare myself with.

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So in no particular order here they are:

Carpe Jugulum by Terry Pratchett

Fair enough, this isn’t particularly scary but feeds into my love of vampires and witches. Plus humour helps dilute the fear a touch.

Ghost Story by Peter Straub

I first read this as a young girl, maybe early teens but I suspect a bit earlier and was terrified by it. One particular part left a lasting impression on my mind and it’s now one of my favourite books for snuggling up under a duvet and reading, assuming of course I’m not alone in the house.

Salem’s Lot by Stephen King

I read this for the first time during High School French. My teacher at the time apparently had better things to do than teach us and so I and the girl I shared a desk with spent our fourth year reading our way through Stephen King. Reading under the bright classroom lights was one thing, but walking the mile and a half home in the dusk another altogether. Instead of taking my usual short cut through the park and along the river bank, I almost ran the long way under street lights just in case.

IT by Stephen King

I still make sure my hair is safely tucked out of the way before I lean over any plug hole thanks to this book. The idea of anything being able to see our darkest fears and use them against is terrifying enough but somehow King manages to make it extra frightening right from the first few pages.

Anno Dracula by Kim Newman

Whilst I like the all novels in this particular series, the first one stands out perhaps because it was the first one I read, anyway you can’t go wrong with a spin on the Dracula story.

The October Country by Rad Bradbury

Nothing beats creepy short stories for those quick bursts of heart pumping fear between chores.

From the Dust Returned by Ray Bradbury

In all Bradbury’s stories about the Elliott family, I can’t shake that feeling of familiarity. No, my nearest and dearest aren’t mummies, ghosts or vampires but they are eccentric, strange and oddly fond of once living animals now stuffed and inanimate. Somehow the family dynamic is similar although my Grandmama doesn’t just come out at Halloween.

The Halloween Tree by Ray Bradbury

This is the book I always imagined reading to my children on Halloween, when their sated with sweets and the candle burns low in the Jack O’Lantern.

The Mistletoe Bride by Kate Mosse

The first story in this collection reminds me so much of the ghost stories of my childhood, whispered undercover of darkness by my Grandmother and my Great Grandmother.

 

There are others, books which somehow catch the edge of what frightens me, the darkness inside not out, that send a tingle of fear tripping down my spine but these are my favourites. That said, I’m always on the look out for more books that make me curl up by the light so any suggestions of spooky things to read would be appreciated.

Lessons to be Learned

I’ve always prided myself on being observant and so it came as a surprise this afternoon to spot this when bouncing through the Mage Quarter looking for stink bombs to clear up :

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On closer inspection I discovered that Archmage Nakada was looking for volunteers for his class and given that the mini Mages looked so cute in their hats, saying no was impossible. That said I wasn’t expecting to be turned into a Crawling Claw for five minutes with a half an hour buff preventing me from becoming another “test subject” straight away.

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My UI is still a work in progress

Have I learnt my lesson? Definitely not, I suspect this will give me yet another reason to haunt the Mage Quarter when I’m in Stormwind but once I’d stopped making happy crawling claw noises and spamming Holy Nova, I got to wondering who is the Archmage and what exactly is he doing there. One trip to WoWhead later and my feelings of fuzziness towards Blizzard (already on a semi high from this patch) increased considerably. I’ve always loved the memorials to people now  sadly missed in-game and as memorials go, this has to be right up there with the pyramids and the Arc de Triomphe. What better way to say goodbye and thanks to someone loved and respected by those responsible for the game that we all love and spend so much time playing.

My Grandmother who despite being not dead or even ill is obsessed with funeral preparations and has asked me to read Christina Rossetti’s “Remember” over her open grave.

Remember me when I am gone away,
         Gone far away into the silent land;
         When you can no more hold me by the hand,
Nor I half turn to go yet turning stay.
Remember me when no more day by day
         You tell me of our future that you plann’d:
         Only remember me; you understand
It will be late to counsel then or pray.
Yet if you should forget me for a while
         And afterwards remember, do not grieve:
         For if the darkness and corruption leave
         A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,
Better by far you should forget and smile
         Than that you should remember and be sad.

Now I’ve always loved her poems but that ending annoys me on some intrinsic level, what’s wrong with remembering and being happy for all the good times and I think that’s why this memorial sings to me so much. It’s not a stone in some out of the way place or a grave garlanded with flowers, it’s something guaranteed to make you smile even if knowing what it represents, that smile is tinged with sadness and I think that’s a lesson we could all benefit from.

For those of you who don’t recognize the area, they are by the clearing by the Mage Tower, next to the Essential Components shop and apparently you can be turned into a variety of creatures including the Crawling Claw and Sprite Darter Hatchling.

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#WoWscreenshotaday – A Hallows End Alphabet

Once again Tycertank is running her #WoWscreenshotaday prompt and this month, it’s the alphabet we’re dealing with. I’ve decided to go with a Halloween/Hallows End theme for the rest of the month simply because it’s that time of year when the air smells of crisp apples and damp fog sidles in from the sea, a time for ghost stories and glancing twice at the flickering shadows.

H is for Haunted House

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I is for Imp

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J is for Jack O’ Lantern

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K is for Kel’Thuzad or at least his image!

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L is for Lantern

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M is for Mausoleum

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N is for Necropolis

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All I want for Hallows End is ….

Tomorrow heralds the start of my favourite WoW holiday, Hallows End and I’ve got my fingers crossed that these two little no longer alive kittens have made into the festivities. I know the game is already loaded with cats, especially when compared to dogs but still.. you can’t have too many ghost cats can you?

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In fact I could forgo all the other bits and bobs, the apple ducking, the skeletons hanging on cupboards and even the Headless Horseman if only they make it into the game this year. Please Blizzard, after all I’ve been a good little Priest (honest!).

First Thoughts on 6.0.2

Patch days always fill me with foreboding, especially those which herald the end of an expansion. We know that as the sun goes down on the current incarnation of the game, that in a sense we have to learn anew and regardless of how positive those changes are, that always floods me with nervousness.

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The addition of new faces for old and familiar characters was a huge issue for me but somehow it’s worked out okay. My Gnomes have attitude by the bucket load of malfunctioning engineering gizmos and my Nightelf Priest, well she looks distinctly holier than thou now. A few hairstyles will need changing and I think my Monk and I will need a while to get reacquainted but nothing I can’t deal with. The Toybox and the reagent bank have proved invaluable. I actually have bag space.. something almost unheard of for me and across all my characters I seem to have wracked up 68 toys so now everyone can wreck trains and plant sinister blue dolls places.

No, the thing which has bothered me most about everything I’ve experienced today has to be Nethergarde Keep, that almost forgotten outpost lurking in the Blasted Lands.

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I know war is meant to be bloody and horrible, but this just seemed a step too far. For the first time since Theramore I’m angry, angry that another town was lost and I could nothing to save it. Angry that NPCs who have been apart of our journey through WoW since the very beginning are once again broken and bloodied amidst burning buildings and battered brick. Sure I now have another title and a new pet but that’s not enough. Poisoning Ogres helped but they aren’t the real enemy. In a way that the Lords of War clips couldn’t, this brief little quest chain has left me wishing to rain destruction down on the Iron Hordes.

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Filling the Toybox – Part 1

One of my favourite new additions to Warcraft is the Toy Box. I find myself almost wishing that I didn’t have to wait another few days for the next patch before this feature is released into my hot little hands. It’s first of all a list plus it’s going to free up beautiful and desperately needed bag space across so many of my characters so what’s not to love.

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I’ve tried to be a bit systematic here, things I’m currently attempting to farm are green, items which aren’t yet available in game are red and items which come from Trading Cards are purple. Anything which is purchasable for any sort of currency whether gold, Timeless Coins or some sort of token is orange.

 

So to sum up page 1, that’s currently 8 items definitely not obtainable until the expansion starts in earnest with a further one item as a maybe. Then we have three things from varying branches of Archaeology, 5 drops from various mobs currently in-game and one item purchasable for Champion’s Seals. As things stand out of these 18, I possess a whopping four items, although I do have enough seals to purchase the Argent Crusader’s Banner so I suppose my current score for page 1 is 5/18.

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Well based on the first four pages, it’s going to be while before I get my hands on the achievement and reward for 150 toys. So far I have twenty two of these out of a possible 74 with a further 22 unavailable until Draenor aligns itself once again with Azeroth.

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