The Call of the Scarab

I really wanted to like these mini holidays but having tried out the Call of the Scarab, I’m struggling to see the point. Yes, there are now lots of people in Silithus again but other than that, it seems to lack focus. It was good to run AQ 40 again as I hadn’t been back for a while but it just highlighted the difference between the game then and the game now. Having to wait for Shield Wall cooldowns when we were pushing for server first kills on Princess Hurhuran is vastly different to two-shotting her on an undergeared level 95 Disc Priest. That said killing C’thun did put a smile on my face even though he went down in the duration of the average sneeze.

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I also got around to collecting the Oracle set so Sprout now looks like this:

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She also got exalted with the Cenarion Circle as an added and unexpected bonus. I gained almost a full level (95 to 96) from arrival by doing the world quests for the two AQ dungeons and also by doing a couple of the quests for the giant bugs which spawn in the hives which is decent gain, especially when compared against the alternative…. questing in Draenor.

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Silithus is an underappreciated zone, I know I had forgotten how pretty it can be under a full moon so perhaps reliving our past glories was a sensible choice for the first micro holiday, I just wish that the Call of the Scarab had slightly more to do as part of it. The race to show your flag at the gates seems to be region wide too and I think we’re outnumbered, certainly we’re outnumbered in terms of people who are interested in taking part. I like being able to wear the Twilight cultist outfit over your own regular clothes, but a transmogrification set that could be farmed and/or sold on the auction house so that people unable to log wouldn’t miss out would have been better (I want the hood!).

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It will be interesting to see how the other micro holidays play out and whether participation in them increases or decreases across the year. So far in terms of providing an interlude in leveling for a character high enough to level to solo the dungeons and do the world quests without dying, it’s been fun but my two level 110’s have found it a bit lacklustre, possibly because pvping over “lol sand” didn’t excite me at the time.

Heroic Efforts, Good Luck Raptors and “that” hit of Adrenaline

Running Black Rook Hold last night I finally figured out what stops me running dungeons like “normal” people. It’s not the healing aspect which is why I can heal in pvp with zero problems (other than I attract Horde like ladybirds to marigolds) and it’s not even the fear of falling to avoid standing in fire during combat. It’s stuff like this:

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Brings me out in a cold sweat every time.

We’re now 5 dungeons down of the 8 available to us. If I had to rank them in order of my favourites it would go something like this:

  • Halls of Valor
  • Maw of Souls
  • Black Rook Hold (too much trash)
  • Eye of Azshara

The scoring criteria takes looks, easiness (for doing with 2 people) and general feel into account.

I can’t really place Darkheart Thicket because I haven’t done it on Normal, just on Heroic. With hindsight, it probably wasn’t the smartest Heroic to pick for running with just two people and it took us a couple of goes to figure out how we would deal with the nightmare/paranoia overlaps on the final boss. A paranoid tank and a silenced healer really doesn’t work well especially when there is only the souvenir raptor left undebuffed.

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That feeling when the Shade of Xavius finally bit the dust was the same hit of adrenaline I used to get when raiding, that feeling which physically effects you with shaking hands. I could potentially get addicted to it again. I don’t mean raiding per se, but perhaps Karazhan isn’t the impossible dream I thought it was.

Slightly insanely the plan is now to see if we can finish running the other three dungeons we’re missing and before trying to complete everything on Heroic. Then perhaps this weekend actually branch out into playing with player controlled characters rather than just the souvenir raptor (awesome as he is).

Post Patch Positives

And perhaps the odd negative.

First up, I’m “Fabulous”. Who knew I was hoarding that many items of clothing. With the exception of my Shaman, everyone else is hiding shoulders and is likely to be doing so for the foreseeable future. I’ve also found so many things I didn’t know I had like the scythe off Ahune and the Blessed Leggings of Undead Slaying.

The changes to the Toybox have given me lots more bag spaces as well as the Robo-Gnomebulator.

Gnome Hunters…every baby Gnome I encountered at the start zone had a mechanical Bunny in tow.

Snow has decided to go back to her roots. The achievement for Benediction has made her very happy, even to the point that she let Sprout transmogrify Anathema.

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Playing a Holy Priest today though felt a lot less fun than yesterday. Now part of that is definitely the content I’ve been doing, we did heroic UBRS as a Protection Warrior/Holy Priest duo and then did a couple of the Pandaria raids with the same combination. Mana really wasn’t really an issue even when someone pulled all the first packs of UBRS at once (glares in Warrior’s direction) so I had the talent which lets your single target heals refresh renew. That meant for virtually all of it, I had to cast renew once per fight, then flash heals interlaced with smite spam, holy fire off cooldown and loot.

No inept Shadowfiend, no mind sear, no shadow word pain, no power word shield, no fear and no mind vision. I didn’t think I’d miss them but I do. Obviously raid/pvp healing will need more than those 3 spells to sustain a fight but I liked having a tool box bursting at the seams with spells.

The removal of Basil the inept Shadowfiend probably hurts the most. Not because he was needed for damage or mana but because I have fond memories of his ineptness during raids. In an ideal world, we’d get a cosmetic glyph which lets Holy Priests summon an “inept shadowfiend” which would bounce around being useless for 10 seconds on a minute cooldown.

On the plus side, getting Mind Control back gave me a big smile. I never felt I could justify the talent point on something so specific but it’s fun for duoing five mans at the appropriate level and it’s a great source of amusement in PvP.

Finally no more gold missions at the Garrison makes me very happy, okay it essentially paid for my mobile Transmogrification Yak but feeling I’ve escaped them even if it’s temporarily is a wonderful feeling.

I shall ride Midnight

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Apparently Attumen does drop a mount after all… After so many Karazhan runs I’ve lost count those fickle Gods of RNG decided that I should be rewarded for my persistence. Now I think I need a suitably “midnight” ensemble perhaps with flashes of red to match.

The Pre Expansion Bucket List – 2 months in

(new additions are blue, completed items are in red).

Non-character specific

  • Reach 14000 achievement points. Currently at 13565 with plenty of achievements almost finished.
  • Get a Magical pet to 25. Done. Basil the Twilight Fiendling has reached his 25th season.
  • Get an Elemental pet to 25. Done. The annoying Audreytwo otherwise known as the Singing Sunflower also reached the level cap.
  • Get 30 Pets to level 25
  • Defeat Garrosh and my stupid lack of self confidence at the same time. I beat him in Hearthstone.. does that count?
  • Make a decent amount of gold to enter the expansion with. I hate being broke even more than I hate farming.
  • Explore Vashj’ir properly. This is the only exploring achievement I still haven’t completed. Done by my Gnome rogue so now I never need return unless I want to!

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Dulcamara

  • Make friends with everyone on the farm. Done and as it turned out, it was surprising easy. I just spent a few minutes flying around in between doing the cooking daily as well as heading to the Valley for some between battlegrounds buried treasure pick ups.

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  • Get Cooking to 6oo, do the Master of the Ways and pick up the Cooking School Bell
  • Farm the other 8000 Dinosaur Bones I require for the mount
  • Complete rank 6 in the Brawler’s Guild as a Mistweaver. Done. I’m now working my way through rank 7.
  • Get Endless Healer on the Proving Grounds.
  • Master of Alterac Valley, only 33 graveyards to go.

Snowflower

  • 35 reputations ticked off. 
  • hit 40 exalted reputations. (I’m currently at 37 out of 40 – thinking Anglers, Pandas and Wildhammer)
  • Exalted with the Oracles
  • Collect Oracle Eggs until one miraculously turns into a Dragon. 
  • Fish up the remaining coins I need from the Dalaran fountain.
  • Argent Tournament goodies. I need more tokens to be able to buy the mounts I still have outstanding. Still quite a long way to go here although I did score myself a Unicorn Mount.
  • Finish up Frostbitten

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Briarrose

  • Briarrose is my long forgotten original Druid currently rusting on a massively imbalanced (not in her favour) PvP server, stuck at lv 73 she needs some love mostly because she has awesome bits and bobs in her bank and can rightfully wield the original vanilla PvP set. Sure the Druid version isn’t my cup of tea but I am rather partial to the staves so she needs to find herself some Boomkin gear and get slaughtering.

Calantha

  • Finish farming the Oshu’gun Crystal Powder I need (in the region of 300ish) to grab the two Halaa mounts. I already have the tokens you get from pvp, it’s just the grind I’ve been putting off.

Mentzelia

  • Get my Worgen Druid to level 90 
  • Farm her a transmogrification that I’m happy with

Anann

  • Level so that I can tame one of these beauties. Very much a work in progress. She’s currently level 30 and parked in Ashenvale.

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I’m off on holiday from Thursday onwards so am hoping to tick off quite a lot of this list, focusing especially on the alts.

MoP Bucket List – One Month Later

All in all the Christmas Holidays and the very act of making a list proved quite productive.

(Everything in red, blue or black was already on the list. Items in green are new additions).

Non-character specific

  • Reach 14000 achievement points. I’m currently at 13215 so that’s quite a bit to go but I have plenty of options to tick off. I’m now sitting at 13485 so whilst there is still quite a long way to go, at least I made some headway.
  • Get a Magical pet to 25. Done. Basil the Twilight Fiendling has reached his 25th season.
  • Get an Elemental pet to 25. Done. The annoying Audreytwo otherwise known as the Singing Sunflower also reached the level cap.
  • Defeat Garrosh and my stupid lack of self confidence at the same time.
  • Make a decent amount of gold to enter the expansion with. I hate being broke even more than I hate farming.
  • Explore Vashj’ir properly. This is the only exploring achievement I still haven’t completed. Done by my Gnome rogue so now I never need return unless I want to!

vashjir

Dulcamara

  • Make friends with everyone on the farm. Done and as it turned out, it was surprising easy. I just spent a few minutes flying around in between doing the cooking daily as well as heading to the Valley for some between battlegrounds buried treasure pick ups.

friendsonthefarm

  • Get Cooking to 6oo, do the Master of the Ways and pick up the Cooking School Bell
  • Farm the other 8000 Dinosaur Bones I require for the mount
  • Complete rank 6 in the Brawler’s Guild as a Mistweaver. Done. I’m now working my way through rank 7.
  • Get Endless Healer on the Proving Grounds.
  • Master of Alterac Valley, only 33 graveyards to go.

Snowflower

  • 35 reputations ticked off. One more to go and I’m currently farming it as this goes to press.
  • Exalted with the Oracles
  • Collect Oracle Eggs until one miraculously turns into a Dragon. Hah…. I can’t give the pets away at the moment.
  • Fish up the remaining coins I need from the Dalaran fountain.
  • Argent Tournament goodies. I need more tokens to be able to buy the mounts I still have outstanding. Still quite a long way to go here although I did score myself a Unicorn Mount.
  • Finish up Frostbitten

frostbitten

Briarrose

  • Briarrose is my long forgotten original Druid currently rusting on a massively imbalanced (not in her favour) PvP server, stuck at lv 73 she needs some love mostly because she has awesome bits and bobs in her bank and can rightfully wield the original vanilla PvP set. Sure the Druid version isn’t my cup of tea but I am rather partial to the staves so she needs to find herself some Boomkin gear and get slaughtering.

Calantha

  • Finish farming the Oshu’gun Crystal Powder I need (in the region of 300ish) to grab the two Halaa mounts. I already have the tokens you get from pvp, it’s just the grind I’ve been putting off.

Anann

  • Level so that I can tame one of these beauties. Very much a work in progress.

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MoP Bucket List

I like lists, they give purpose and clarity to my thinking. In fact the first thing I do every Monday morning at work is glance over last week’s list and then make a new shiny one for the week ahead.

I know that the next expansion isn’t even being beta tested yet but it’s time in my head at least to finalize what I want to achieve before we’re all heading off to a brave new world.

Non-character specific

  • Reach 14000 achievement points. I’m currently at 13215 so that’s quite a bit to go but I have plenty of options to tick off.
  • Get a Magical pet to 25
  • Get an Elemental pet to 25
  • Defeat Garrosh and my stupid lack of self confidence at the same time.
  • Explore Vashj’ir properly. This is the only exploring achievement I still haven’t completed.

Dulcamara

  • Make friends with everyone on the farm
  • Get Cooking to 6oo, do the Master of the Ways and pick up the Cooking School Bell
  • Farm the other 8000 Dinosaur Bones I require for the mount
  • Complete rank 6 in the Brawler’s Guild as a Mistweaver
  • Get Endless Healer on the Proving Grounds.
  • Master of Alterac Valley, only 33 graveyards to go.

Snowflower

  • 35 reputations ticked off
  • Exalted with the Oracles
  • Collect Oracle Eggs until one miraculously turns into a Dragon.
  • Argent Tournament goodies. I need more tokens to be able to buy the mounts I still have outstanding.
  • Finish up Frostbitten

frostbitten

Calantha

  • Finish farming the Oshu’gun Crystal Powder I need (in the region of 300ish) to grab the two Halaa mounts. I already have the tokens you get from pvp, it’s just the grind I’ve been putting off.

Anann

  • Level so that I can tame one of these beauties

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This will definitely do as a starting point. I’d like to level a Horde Hunter for example, probably an Orc to tick the dual boxes of rescuing Spot from Theramore and also being able to explore Draenor at some point on a Orc. I’d also like to level a Dwarf Mage or Worgen Mage, I can’t decide which would fit the name of Havisham best but these can wait.