Monthly Archives: June 2008

Scorchling punk.

Actually, a pretty amusing nod to Molten Core.

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Posted by on June 28, 2008 in Screenshots


Win, or live. Or both?

Results of the poll, albeit limited to WoW Insider readers who bother to answer poll questions, would seem to suggest a lot of people take the “Win” approach.  You “win” when you get to Level 70.  If “winning” comes easy, you’ll have multiple 70′s.

But how many “hardcore” win so fast and furious that they then drop-out?  Quite a few in my experience.  And more than a few of those come back again.  The fast and furious lifestyle and habits of a “winner” becomes it’s own addiction.

But not everyone is dead set on the end-goal of “Winning”.  Some are here to “live” in this virtual world.  Content to play an Orc, hunting prey on the grassy plains of The Barrens.  For me it’s as much fun playing, granted it’s leveling up, low level characters as it is getting into instances and collecting tabards and stealing flames from the enemy’s cities.

The beauty of this game is that there is a breadth here.  “70″ beckons at the end of a long and adventure filled life.  There are still quests I’ve never done.  The Scarlet Crusade storyline in the Eastern Plaguelands.  I completely skipped over that in my first push to instance running.  And my second push to instance running.  I didn’t need to do them to reach 60 and advance into a better geared 60.  Hopefully, this fifth time around for me we’ll linger just a little longer in our 50′s and into our 60′s in the Plaguelands.  And see what’s up in Tyr’s Hand and Hearth Glen.

I’ll reach 70, and I’ll live.

P.S. I almost forgot why I was posting this.  Mounts at 30?  To speed things up for folks so they can get to 70 faster?  Why is that necessary?  How about ponies at 20, mounts at 40, epic mounts at 60, flight at 70, and epic flight at 80?  Or, if reaching the end fast were really that important, how about selling XP for gold at the vendors?  It’ll be nice, this mount at 30.  (My first two legged mount coming up shortly.)  But I didn’t have to have this.  Give me more quests, more places to explore, not a mount 10 levels earlier.

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Posted by on June 28, 2008 in Musings


Thirds. A WoWInsider poll.

I took the poll asked over at WoW Insider today.  LINK.

Basically, how many 70′s do you have?

I answered 3.  This was what their poll results looked like when I took it:

None. Yet.    667 (8.6%)
Just the one.    2191 (28.3%)
Two.    2149 (27.8%)
Three.    1348 (17.4%)
Four.    690 (8.9%)
Five!    319 (4.1%)
Six to eight.    218 (2.8%)
Nine — one for every class.    63 (0.8%)
Ten or more. “Real life”? What’s that?    97 (1.3%)

Let me add a spin to it:

None. Yet.    667 out of  7,742 total, or  100.00% of the total voters/players have had a character at this stage.  Naturally.

Just the one.    2191    7,075    91.38%
Two.    2149    4,884    63.08%
Three.    1348    2,735    35.33%
Four.    690    1,387    17.92%
Five!    319    697    9.00%
Six to eight.    218    378    4.88%
Nine — one for every class.    63    160    2.07%
Ten or more. “Real life”? What’s that?    97    97 of 7,742 =  1.25%

What this said is that 1.25% of the players (who’ve voted so far) had 10 or more level 70′s.  I would have thought there would be more.  I’m relieved to learn that most folks indeed have lives.  :)

2.07% the players have at least 9 level 70′s, one for every class.  Our Guild Master has that many.  He’s in that top 2%.

Folks with six or more 70′s comprised only 4.88% of the players.

9% of all players had at least 5 level 70′s.

18% of all players had at least  4 level 70′s

35% of all players had at least 3 level 70′s.  That’s where I’m at.  In the top 3rd.  Every 3rd player I see has as many 70′s as me.  Yowza.

63%, or about 2 out of every 3 players, have at least 2 level 70′s.  Wow.  That’s a lot of 70′s out there.

91% have at least 1 level 70.  9 folks in 10 have a level 70 character. (Or 9 out of 10 readers of WoW Insider who bother to vote in polls)

There are no more noobs. Pretty much every player has made it to the end, level 70, at least once.  2/3′s have done it at least twice, and 1/3 have done it at least 3 times.  (That’s crazy numbers.  Unless my math is off.  And don’t forget this is just the WoW Insider voters who bother to vote in polls.  7,000 and more of them so a good sample.)


Posted by on June 25, 2008 in Uncategorized



Last summer, if you’ve been reading here that long, I told you about my level 42 Druid stealing flames from the three Horde cities.  Only to learn he had to be level 50 to activate the quests from those flames.  “Till next year” means today!  Yay!

You know the sound effect?  From those game shows?  When you get the answer … wrong.  That “Wha wha whaaa” sound.

That’s what I heard when I went to turn in the fires I’d gotten from Orgrimmar, Undercity, and Thunderbluff.

Say what?  I need Silvermoon City’s flame?  How hard could that be?

So I flew up to Light’s Hope Chapel.  Then rode into the Ghostlands, making sure to pick up the flightpoint at the Zul’Aman entrance.

Then on to Silvermoon City.

Careful now.  Kitty Mode full on.  Sneak, sneak, sneak.  Nobody here.  Look away.  Just another bright day in town. …  Dang, those guards at the main entrance have got some olfactory nerves on them because I was jumped like some Gloucester High teen as soon as I stepped into the city.  (Low blow, sorry.  No offense intended against the fine guards of Silvermoon City.)

Anyway, I recovered my body after I sent Stormsoul in to investigate where the fire even was.  End of the Murder Row just into the Court of the Sun.  Oh, how à propos.

Carefully avoiding getting too close to anyone, I stealthed into the heart of the city.  A little lost I wound up stealthing through one of the Inns.  Finally I made it to Murder Row.  Scouting ahead I see two more guards.  I couldn’t sneak through the last pair stationed like this.  I could take the death and advance further.

But, wait, there’s more.  There’s some 70′s doing the silly games near the fire.  Oh, yeah, that’s going to work.

So I sat stealthed in the Warlock Trainer’s area.  Inside the curtains, occasionally looking out to see what was going on.

Nobody there?  Just the NPC’s?  Level 70 Troll Priest at the south end of Murder Row, just sitting there.  So I turn north, and go through the two guards.  Whoa.  Made it.  And into the pond when the mechanical guard goes by, with his stealth detection on.  He’s going down Murder Row.  I’m getting my fur wet, and I’m a cat.  Pfft.

I jump out and run behind the bonfire.  Last year I think I activated a pole to steal the fire.  This year I simply clicked on the bonfire.   This was easy.  Again.  The Fire of Silvermoon City was mine.  I walk to the back corner and hearth home.

Turn in the fires, grab my crown.  Now I linger, just slightly longer than I had to, at the mailbox.

P.S. Stealth capable classes for the win!

P.P.S. It only got better.  Turning in four flames from the enemy cities earned me 100 flowers.  I used those to buy the summer chest armor.  And, watch out, I’m on fire!

On fire

P.P.P.S. Be sure to check out WoWInsider’s Flames article.

P.P.P.P.S. Using another location guide, Itarilde and I visited a bunch of flames in Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms.  She quit once she got 350 flowers and her Captured Flame.  I got my Brazier of Dancing Flames and then kept going until I’d visited every single flame, Horde and Alliance.  Actually, finally, got ganked in Netherguard Keep by an Orc Shaman and a Tauren Warrior, both 70′s.  Oh well.  A Troll Shaman died in Stranglethorn Vale and the balance was restored.  When you added up how many flames there were, and realized you earned 5,000xp for honoring a friendly flame, and 10,000 xp for desecrating an enemy flame, it was like riding all over the world turning in quests.  I earned a small bit of gold doing it as well.  And lovely Itarilde dinged 62 as well.

One more update: In Nashville for a conference.  So I took the lovely Itarilde for a run to capture the enemy fires.  Undercity was a piece of cake.  I did need to wait for the lingering 70 Warlock to move on.  Second he did I made my move and captured the flame.  Next stop, Silvermoon City.  Like Greenclaw, first death was inside the gates.  On collecting my body, and studying the patrols, I again went through the inn to Murder Row and then walked between the two guards.  Nobody around.  I grab the flame and restealth.  3 70′s appear.  Alliance.  One bows to me.  They grab their flames and mount up.  I mount up too and say “Let’s blow this pop stand.”  We ride out, they in the lead.  Sweet.  Next up, Orgrimmar.  The first guards get as I enter via the back entrance.  Some mage makes sure to Arcane Explosion as well.  Woots for him.  Stealthing I move to where I remember the fire was last year.  Nope.  It’s just to the south of there.  And guards somehow spot me, and a Warlock too, for good measure.  I died in the house next to the fire.  I come back and scout around in wisp form.  I watch the Warlock make an utter hash of the torch tossing.  I find the rogue in the same guild obviously waiting exactly where I’d expect me to be.  (I like how rogues think alike with regards to tactical stealthing.) So I rez at a safe distance and move to a new hut and log off.  This morning I log on and easily grab the flame.  I take a portal to Moonglade and then head to Thunderbluff. That was the easiest flame to steal.  Nobody around.  There was a tricky moment there, passing through two close guards going into an inn leading to the walkway to the Elder Rise.  The guards turn, but don’t aggro. I’d made it. All in all, 3 deaths, 100 flowers, 1 crown.  I turned the 100 flowers in for the chest armor and Itarilde too is a true spirit of summer.


Posted by on June 21, 2008 in Druids, Explorations, Quests


Self writing posts… aka Search Terms

Here’s the latest Search Engine Terms folks used to find my page here:

“wow lockpick quest”

Guilty.  I did that little write-up about Horde leveling up lock picking in Redridge.  Comments included Alliance who used boat off Ratchet.

“wotlk hairstyles”

Wow, that’s an old one.  I think I talked about the Mohawk once.  Mr. T.

“alliance battlegroup always win”

Seems that way sometimes.

“horde winning battlegroup”

I’d love to know.

“alliance wow night elf rogue lockpicking”

Once upon a time “alliance” “wow” “night elf” and “rogue” added up to a whole lot of redundancy.

“world of warcraft private server paladin”

Hey, hey.  We’ll have none of that around here.  This is a clean living family page.  What you do with your Belf on your own private server, should stay there.  And You Tube.  (And remember, rear view mirrors on your monitor are your friends. (I’ll have to find that link for that you tube video of a friend catching a dude dancing his night elf for his, (cough) personal pleasure.))

“corrupted blood disease virus that wreak”

My Warlock is only level 16.  But those search terms have “Warlock” written all over.

“do not look into laser beam with remaini”

This term was incomplete.  I think it ends “with remaining life.”  Obviously looking for confirmation of Balance Druids in PvP.

“gnome warrior”

Someone’s been drinking in the morning again.

“qq more you loot whore”

Oh, I’m not qq’ing.


Posted by on June 18, 2008 in Musings


Druids in Zangarmarsh

So we’re Level 61 and we wander into Zangarmarsh to start the quests for the Cenarian group.

ZOMG.  Did Zangarmarsh get hit with the nerf stick?  When I got there with my first characters, Warrior and Shaman, and Hunter, it didn’t seem as easy as last night, the two of us, Bear and Cat, ripped the place a new drain.

Is it normal for a 61 Druid to get 2000+ crits?  And I’ve got 25% or so crit chance.  And with Omen of Clarity bring up clearcasting left and right, it’s like I switched on a hack or something. 

And, good news, the world is a safer place, for a small while, for the mushroom Sporelok people.  (But until Blizzard turns off the “Bad Guy Cloning Machine” all blame goes to them for innocent deaths.  We did what we could.)

And after dinging 62 I’m reminded that 6 more levels and I’ve got flight form.  (It was nice running that little Stormcrow quest for the lady at the inn to get a taste of what it’ll be like.)

funny pictures
moar funny pictures


1) OK now sum durid is cat

2) Cat durid, tehm dosent heel.

3) Cat uis for fite

4) Cat durid dosent talk about fite

- Alamo

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Posted by on June 18, 2008 in Druids


On the eve of WotLK I’m leveling a lockpicker.

I’m not one for hopeless grinding/farming.  The only way I managed to get 10 Primal Mights together was because they became two epic axes for the lovely Droonda, the wife’s Shaman.  Yeah, they are a little fast for an Enhancement Shaman, but they’re epic, and they look good, double back mounted one-handers, and I can make them on my own through my own efforts.  I don’t want to need 9 others to farm badges, or gear, with, or 24 others to farm nexus crystals or hearts of darkness for me. 

(A screeching backpedal here.  I did require 40 badges to get 4 Primal Nethers.  When a Primal Nether drops in an instance, it ain’t going to the Alchemist/Herbalist.  Know what I mean?  And the freaking things were soulbound.  They went to the bank of a crafter, of course.  Don’t need it for anything?  Bank it and sell that axe you’ll make with it for 2,000 in a week.  Grats to you and your choice of craft.  I tapped into my badges savings, from my life as a Karazhan raider, and the Shattered Sun Offense Supplies actually manage to generate a badge a month or so, so we got the Primal Nethers I needed to craft the two axes.  Yeah, I could have bought them now too.  See below re: money.)

I’ve gotten two characters to Exalted with the Shattered Sun Offensive, and Lord, yeah, the money’s good, but money isn’t fun.  The Tabard is nice.  The shields are okay, and I sure wish I’d had access to them before getting Exalted with the Shatar for my Warrior’s shield, or turning in badges for my Shaman’s.  The pendants are nice, but who’s exalted with Aldor?   Oh, sure, the farmers are.  It’s not something that winds up happening unlike, kinda, Cenarian (Stormsoul) or Shatar (Msaker).  Msaker actually “farmed” instance runs in order to get the shield to better tank with.  (He’s now Fury.) 

Stormsoul’s now close to Exalted with the Shattered Sun, because while money might not be “fun” it does pay for things like mounts (Cenarian Hippogriff) and recipes (like epic axe patterns) and the odd piece of gear, and training.  Money might not buy me love, but it’s got it’s uses.

So, I don’t need to farm for materials at the moment.  I’m not raiding or instancing, so no need to farm mats for pots.  I’ve got my antlers, Droonda’s got her axes, so no immediate need for mats or honor for gear.

So what’s a player to do?  Level a lockpicker of course.  Level 27 and speeding along.  “Speeding” meaning I’m doing other things as well.  It’s not just all about him.  But when the wife retires, the rogue comes out to play.

Now I’ll admit, previous farming activity that’s helping him out has been getting the Crusader enchant recipe that got put on his level 20 blue boe that we got somewhere using Orbs we got from the two of us running live side Stratholm.  Another round of farming will be to get another copy of the Crusader recipe for my wife’s Enchanter, and get her Enchanter to 300 of course, and then get a few more Orbs, and then she’ll be able to put Crusader on my soulbound quest rewards like the Sword of Omen and Vanquisher’s blade.  Soon.  :)  It’s quite something to have 58 Strength boosted to 158 when Crusader procs.  The self-healing was what I got it for.  Less down time.

Thinking about it, I am just blown away by all the things I have yet to get done in this game.*

Oh yeah, I’ve also applied to my old guild.  Do I even have time to raid/instance??

*And not to forget getting our two Deathknights to Northrend for their meeting with Destiny.

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Posted by on June 16, 2008 in Musings


Too easy?

My first epic.  And 3 pieces of the “faction pvp” gear.

Oh, I’m getting ahead of myself here.  I’m only level 61.  That’s just me messing around with some items I’ve put into the bank waiting for me to turn level 70.

That’s right.  That’s the Season 1 Arena armor helm.  I soooo wanted those antlers.  There’s that whole Druid/Cenarian thing, my Shan’do’s got them for crying out loud.  And the Season 2 helm looks weak.  Itarilde will be getting the Season 2 moon helm.  It looks great on her.  (Everything does.)  Me?  I wanted those deer antlers from Season 1.  And I pvp’d up the 14500 honor points and got them.

The last stretch of honor earning I was back in Alterac Valley.  Now the lowest of the low and not at the top of the game like the previous pvp sessions.  There are two to four level 51-60 AV matches on my server, and twenty to thirty 61-70 matches.  Obviously I’ll never be wanting for a match.  And my win-loss record there is 19-2.  That’s a lot pre-61 in that score, but the last 4 out of 5 AV matches we won too.

Now what does a level 61 Druid contribute to an AV?  Screenshots or it didn’t happen, you say?

I was 7th in Killing blows.

As a level 61 Druid my job was to stay out of sight, and pounce on the weak, the running, the clothies.  Preferably interrupting a spell they were casting.  I do die.  Very easily.  Some ‘Lock cast some corruption on me, and I was taking 360 damage a tick.  I have 3600 health.  I’m dead quicker than I can do the math.  Tracking people is also good.

I know Alterac Valley, I know the goals, I can contribute.  (Even if it’s just extra healing on the Drek fight, or removing a curse or poison from a teammate.)

Next honor purchase will be the Season 2 arena shoulders.  The ones with the flowers growing on them.  It’s a Druid thing.

And the new Rogue, Sunstriker, is coming along.  Level 22 and geared.  Well, in true Belf form, I’ve got to say he looks good in the Defias stuff.

And Droonda and Msaker are Exalted with the Shattered Sun Offensive.  And Stormsoul will be in the next week or so.  Then Arcarius.

Even if it’s easy, it’s still fun.

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Posted by on June 8, 2008 in BGs/PvP


Free (kind of) 20-100 Lockpicking Skill.

Alliance, you already have it. You know Lakeshire.

Horde, Blood Elves at the very least, here’s free lockpicking without worrying about Zombie Trolls getting in your way.

You’ll get your Lockpick quest in Tranquillen.   Do it.  By the time you’ve hit Lockpicking 20, and have gotten the quest object, and you’ve turned it in, you’re pretty much “done.” But have you wondered how to get the rest of the skill, the 20-90 something skillups? Don’t do it in the cave with the Trolls. They’re annoying.

Take a road trip!

Get to Silvermoon City and take the teleport to the Undercity. Head to the Zeppelin stand and take the higher Zeppelin to Grom’gol down in Stranglethorn Vale.

Now go for a swim. Jump into the water right outside of Grom’gol and swim up the coast to Westfall. Don’t worry, it’s free of bad guys. Boredom might be the killer here.

On landing in Westfall you’ll head east to the road. Before you go too far you might want to collect a Red Defias Mask (Rogues only) from any of the Defias guys around the area. It’s not as nice as the Blood Elf Bandit mask, but muuuuch easier to get.

Anyway, head east and north and into Elwynn Forest. You’ll want to avoid the roads and the occasional wandering guards. Keep your sprint available for emergencies.  Running back to your corpse after a ?? guard gets it is going to slow you down more than not using your sprint occasionally.

Go east through Elwynn Forest, stay south of the main road, be polite to the Alliance gawkers, wave, and you’ll hit Redridge. Follow the map below to the mill building.

Watch out for the one Alliance guard standing near the entrance to Elwynn Forest. He’s waiting for his lunch and might be in a bad mood. Avoid the multiple guards at the bridge. Once past the bridge there are a couple groups of level 20 Orcs to be on the lookout for as well. (Obviously your ability to stealth will have served you numerous times already.)  Go past all that, and make your way to the mill.

Inside you’ll find lock boxes scattered on the ground, and not one Troll, or other enemy, in sight. Position yourself close enough to a group of three boxes, so that you can pick each one without moving, and go to town. Pick right one, pick middle one, pick left one, and right one has respawned. I leveled up to 100 (being level 20 now) very quickly.

Oh, yeah, on a PvP server remember to have, as usual, fun with this.

P.S. I’m not sure if it’s this easy in the Troll Catacombs for the Blood Elf rogues. If it is, and you do it this way, enjoy the mask and the trip. I’m an explorer type so I did it this way for fun anyway. :)


Posted by on June 1, 2008 in Rogues


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