That’s a loaded comment, since I’ve /gquit my raiding guild.
I couldn’t raid. Work was requiring me to stay late more often than not. Meaning I was neglecting exercise and my regular chores around the house to get online in time for the invites to play a video game. I never had the late hours earlier, and my previous raiding life was good. But times change.
The guild I was just in was a raiding guild. If you were in the guild, you raided. The previous guild had a solid concentration on the all the end-game content, to include the 5-mans, both regular and heroic. This raiding guild was spending all it’s time either in cliques, or in the further progression of instance it had attained. (BT and MH.) Somebody asked once, “What about the alts?” “Go join guild X.”
I couldn’t get to the raid times. I wasn’t going to raid. So I find myself at 70 just like I found myself at 60. On my own, my wife my best company and companion. Not quite as Kinless as the original guy, but close. ;) (Hey, these “role-playing” clothes are starting to fit!)
Back to the topic.
Where was I at the start of the last expansion? I had three 60′s.
Stormsoul had completed the tier 1 content (Molten Core) and gotten into Tier 2 (Blackwing Lair) and was wearing the full Tier 1 epic set (8 pieces). He also achieved the PvP rank of Stoneguard (Rank 6) as he acquired the Unstoppable Force when he switched to Enhancemenet in a solo career. This was before dual wielding became mandatory.
Msaker, in his 40′s when Stormsoul was raiding at 60, got to 60, and spent the time to get the entire superior PvP set (6 pieces), and the rank of Centurian (Rank 9). (I had to earn honor after the system change to get the last two Champion pieces.)
Arcarius, a basically abandoned character as the two horde characters above him came into their own, pushed to 60 just to get to the Outlands upon their opening, and PvPed to the rank of Knight (Rank 6) and then earned enough honor to buy a couple of pieces of the Superior set, and then the crowning glory, those shiny epic Hunter shoulders.
At 70, as at 60, I’m pretty much in the same position. My further achievements will be what what I can earn on my own, or in the company of my wife. (We drilled the Drillmaster last night, 2 60′s vs. a 62 Elite. Much like we darkened Ruul and his drake, 2 70′s vs. a 71 Elite. I tanked Ruul, she tanked Zurok. Good times were had by all except the bad guys.)
All this is kind of a lead-in to this point: Where I’ll be here at 70 is vastly broader than where I was at 60, poised for the next expansion.
At 70 I’ve probably got 25+ dailys to do for cash flow. At 60 there was nothing but farming mats that folks might want, or offering services. At 70 I can still farm mats and offer transmutes, but the addition of the dailys makes this a world of difference.
At 60, before the change in the Honor/PvP system, getting epics on your own was nigh impossible unless you committed yourself over to PvP entirely. At 70 with the introduction of the Shattered Sun Offensive, if you can use a shield, your epic shield, for either caster or tank, is just a few weeks away. There’s epic patterns and plans that are world drops and can be bought in the auction house. There’s the epic arena gear that can be earned with an investment of time in the battlegrounds. There’s Badges of Justice that can be earned, slowly, but inevitably, doing the SSO dailys and getting lucky with the supply packs. Epics can be bought for as few as 15 badges.
It’s becoming a rapidly purple world. And the threshold to getting them is getting easier and easier.
Stormsoul is poised for the expansion having seen most of Tier 4 (never did see Mags), most of Tier 5 (killed Vashj, never saw Kael), and got into Tier 6 (seeing 2 bosses in Mount Hyjal and 1 in Black Temple killed, in my two excursions there.) I’m wearing Tier 4, Tier 5, and gear out of MH. In all epics, and middle range stuff at that.
Msaker is poised for the expansion after seeing all of Karazhan. He’s also in all epics, but the lower end of things. One piece of Tier 4, some PvP armor, and odds-and-ends picked up by Badge turn-ins.
Arcarius, ever the loner, never running anything past Hellfire Citadel, he’s got 2 pieces of the superior (faction based) PvP gear, and 2 pieces of the epic arena gear. Before the expansion I foresee getting a few more of the PvP pieces.
Gold is easy to get. Epics too. And we can be as casual as we want to be. That is to say, the casual player is not as excluded as he or she used to be, and grows less and less so. (Now if the SSO folks could see fit to offer a proper, epic, ranged weapon, and we’d be talking.)
And, honestly, I’m in no rush for the expansion. We’ve got our Druids in the their 60′s only just starting the Outlands. We have our Humans, Pally and Mage, still in their 40′s preparing to head to the plaguelands to cleanse the place one scourge eliminated at a time. And the 70′s, they’ve got their hands full.
About the only rain on WoW’s parade will be WoW II’s. ;)