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Monthly Archives: September 2009

An essential add-on for the music lover.

I use a lot of add-ons.  Ones I’ve come to enjoy using are Outfitter, Pitbull 4 (much easier to use than 3), Bartender 4, Combuctor (for bags), MrTrader (a new tradeskill addon).  But those are essentials.

My favorite, alright, a favorite, happens to be one called EpicMusicPlayer.  If you’ve amassed a large number of cd’s over the years, like I have, and then converted them all to MP3 to listen to on nearly every generation of MP3 player there’s been, then you’d be in luck.  The out-of-game playlist generator is very easy to use, and the in-game player is the best I’ve ever seen.  (You can turn off the dancers.)

I’ve been listening to outside music while playing since my Molten Core days.  If I was quiet in vent that was why.  (Just chilling to the sounds of lounge music.)  But it’s better to have in-game control over your music.

Anyway, since I don’t want to overwhelm the system with the 1000′s of mp3s I just put a few play lists together.  I’ve got one of Chill (143 tracks), House (“Let this house be Progressive!” SM-Trax, and 136 other tracks), Buddha Bar (9 double cd’s worth, or 285 tracks), Chillout in Paris (98 tracks), B-Tribe (59 tracks (I should be in Ibiza, no?)), Collective Soul (Gel, and 46 other tracks), Latin (44 tracks, Caminando Por La Calle, by the Gypsy Kings, a favorite), African (96 tracks, Todii by Oliver Mtukudzi I really like), Green Day (48 tracks, American Idiot+), the 70′s (Kasey Casem works on in 135 tracks), Nirvana Lounge (108 tracks).  And I still don’t have enough loaded.

Coming into the Argent Tournament grounds, flying in on a Griffin, circling above the ice and water, listening to Atman, Path of Love, is an experience.  (Of course that entrance scene is pretty cool with any music.)

 
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Posted by on September 26, 2009 in Musings

 

Threes

Let’s see.  Threes.

Stormsoul’s become my third Crusader.  I pretty much wrapped up my Argent Crusade dailies with 3 remaining reputations hovering at, or near, 99%.  Time to turn in the 4 writs I’d earned.  Playing a balancing act I used 1 writ each for Undercity and Darkspear, and 2 writs for Silvermoon.  Argh!  Now I was solidly 99% for each repuation at this point.  Sure, I could just wait a day and do the dailies one more time. … I’m too impatient for that.  Off to Orgrimmar.  Because I could also add another seasonal brewmug to my collection.  (Now I have blue, yellow, and green mugs in the inventory of several characters.  Which brings to mind Roy G. Biv.  I.e. the rainbow.  Colors left for next years mug:  Red, orange, indigo, or violet.  Red or orange would be very appropriate for the events forthcoming.  But, tonight I’m going to party like it’s nineteen ninety nine.  Warrior’s, appropriately, can dual wield two mugs, and can load up on, and then put away, twice the beer with every visit to a keg.  I was seeing Pink Elekks long after I’d returned to Northrend.)

Oh, wait, sidebar aside, where was I?  Ah yes.  Repuation.  (Heh.)  So after collecting my green mug outside of Orgrimmar, I traveled to Razorhill.  I killed some of the motly crew of humans infesting the old castle ruins.  Then I killed some bristlebacks infesting the old dirt.  Bada ding, Darkspear achieved.  Then I traveled to the Undercity.  Seems I’d left behind a small investigation into a lich guy I needed to look into on an island outside of Brill.  A little running back and forth to the Mage quarter in the Undercity and my mission there was accomplished.  Exalted with the the UC.  I was worried about Silvermoon City.  I’d actually gone and done every quest I had there.  So I headed to Tranquillen and tried to get some Silvermoon rep there.  I grabbed the Kill Knucklerot and his Buddy quest.  Wow, I thought I was in luck when I saw the flash of green.  Except that just got me to Friendly with Tranquillen, nothing with Silvermoon City.  So I ignored the rest of Tranquillen, returned to Silvermoon City and then toured the countryside scanning for a quest, any quest, to do.  Voila!  There was one!  I’d actually skipped the quest to go get Saltheril and his girlfriend pizza, beer, and glow sticks, for their party.  Not a moment to waste!  (And I come with 3 mugs of my own.  I’m ready.)  Party stuff gathered, returned to Saltheril, ding!  Exalted with Silvermoon City.  I went and got a purple strider and recalled back to Dalaran and returned back to the tournament grounds.  Now that I’m a Crusader I qualified for 2 more quests that night.  The quests to shoot the Kraken, and kill the Mistcaller in his cave.  Easy peasy.

All told, I’ve earned 175 or so Commander’s Seals getting to this point.  I’d already spent 50 seals on two maces, which I briefly used in an Enhancement kick.  (I’m Elemental again.  The Elemental gear I’d gotten just raiding the beginning stuff (H Naxx-25) was still better than anything I could get my hands on for Enhancement not raiding or pvping.)  (I also used a bunch of badges last time around getting the twin Sunwell fist weapons when I tried Enhancement for a brief period previously.)

Three Crusaders. 

Three reputations taken to Exalted in one night.  (The final reps all tend to come at once though.)

My third, and final three?  Three full sets of heirlooms armor and weapons.  Horde pally using Polished Valor items and Bloodied Reaper.  Horde priest (eventually goblin warlock) using Dreadmist and Headmaster’s Charge.  Alliance rogue (and previously hunter) wearing leather gear and using the one-handed sword.  Either I’ll get my Druid a Sylvery Sylvan Stave (in place of a Titansteel Destroyer*) or I’ll get the McGowan hammer for the Rogues other hand.

*The Titansteel Destroyer seems good for cat form, the Sylvery Stave for bear form.  I know I’m using bear form more when I’m slaying cultists and Kvaldir, but it still seems a shame to waste a good Titansteel Destroyer by replacing it.

 
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Posted by on September 23, 2009 in Musings

 

Tea for two

If your afternoon respite happened to consist of slaying scourge, kobolds, and/or trolls, and you traded scones and earl gray for swords, axes, and magic, and magic carpet rides (see the header), then you’d kind of have a “tea for two” kind of day.

The wife had suggested this would be a “World of Warcraft” weekend.  When she wasn’t off in the PvP/RvR of Warhammer, she’d spend some time with me.

So there I was thinking we’d get our Paladin/Mage couple a little further ahead.

But we had two things which came first.

I had visions of wielding that Borean Tundra axe on my Death Knight.  So we started with our Death Knights and took them to the Borean Tundra.  I can’t get over how much easier it is doing these quests having flight in Northrend at level 68.  It’s not free levels, but it’s a tremendous leg up over our original passage through, twice, with our Horde Warrior/Shaman and our Alliance Druids.  And I thought that quest required us to kill the boss up in the floating necropolis past the Buffaloman Village.  (Alliance have to assist a lady, the sister of a Death Knight turned good, and slay a boss up there, and it’s not a trivial fight.)  So we did all there quests and we were never offered quests in the city to kill scourge.  Finally I figured out (thanks to WoWhead) that I needed to do those bloodspore quests outside of Warsong Keep first.  In fact, that’s all the Horde had to do.  Waltz down Gammathra’s cave, kill him, speak with Garrosh, go to the village and collect our axes.  At some point they’ll just need to just supply quests rewards to us in the mail with ribbons on top.  Or, Deathknights, two of them together, are content burners.

I mentioned kobolds.  Those would be the ones in Dungeons and Dragons Online.  The wife had created a Cleric, so I did too.  Which meant she deleted her Paladin (free accounts are limited to 2 characters) and created a Sorceror.  So, my cleric and her sorceror knocked out a few quests.  We have only made it to level 2, but it’s really rather fun.  We did all the quests on the starting island and have now started the quests in the harbor area of Stormreach.  I absolutely love the idea of “solo” instances.  (I hate the idea of the two of us running into several “solo only” instances, which we did, but the fact that there is a world of instances meant for two, makes it ideal for us.  DDO has got questing in instances down, very well done.)  And the DDO graphics are very, very nice and interesting, something I’ve already mentioned.  This is great “hop in, hop out” gaming.  Currently, this will keep our Warhammer resubs on hold for a while.

And Honorus and Effilda dinged 76 and 75 respectively working for the Trolls now in Zul’Drak.  I’m not sure the quests are in the right order though.  We’ve killed Drakkaru already, but his Drakkari are still holding sway over the frozen reaches and the temples of the avatars.

 
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Posted by on September 21, 2009 in Musings

 

Arcarius dings 80

Arcarius dings 80

Arcarius just dinged 80.

It was so long ago, Nov-Dec 2004, that he was created as Kinless on the Argent Dawn server.

Now, wearing leather heirloom items, completing the Zul’Drak questing achievement, and doing several days worth of Pa’Troll and Argent Crusade Dailys, he swiftly went from 74 to 80.  (He was stuck at level 74 in Dragonblight for what felt like forever.  And it was still interspersed with playing other characters even then.)

Now he’s in full Swiftarrow Mail.  He’s 2 seals shy of acquiring the Sylvery Sylvan Stave, and he’s picked up the fairly adequate Zombie Sweeping Shotgun from the Argent Crusade rep.

Now it’s time to tame Skoll, the lightning dog.  Wish me luck.

 
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Posted by on September 16, 2009 in Dings

 

Sorry about the mess.

Dear Newbies of Falconwing Square, Deathknell, Valley of Trails, Northshire Abbey, Shadowglen, Karanos, etc.,

Don’t glower at me.  I see those newbie eyes of yours glaring at me

Yeah.  /sheepish.  That was me. 

That was me littering your newbie zone with the corpses of the scarlet crusade, murlocs, putridhides, and anything else I can blast with my presence.

I know the drill well.  I’ve been through your area here a few times like you’re doing now.  Sometimes it’s not easy.  Those pesky murlocs run all over the place, and have friends.  Those scarlet crusade guys can be tough.

But for me?  I cough a zone away and they all drop dead.  If I don’t have to loot some trivial thing from them to fulfill the quest, I don’t even bother looting them.  Killing them, and leaving them for the vultures, was good enough to please my new masters.

I’m doing this to get city reputation.  And I guess I can’t really be all too worried about your feelings, or your ability to perform the same tasks for the same masters.  Oh, I care.  But I have needs too, and not enough to give you the 10g you ask me for.  “Plz” and puppy dog eyes ain’t going to cut it.  And not enough to put this requirement the Argent Crusade has put on me on indefinite hold.  I’m doing this, so I’m going to do it.

Oh, sure, I have options.  I can do Argent Crusade dailies for writs.  Forever.  Uh, no.

I could loot Runecloth from intelligent mobs across the Burning Steppes and Hellfire Penninsula.  Uh, no.  Been there, done that.  (Msaker is riding a Raptor, in part by doing this.  But as a practical exercise?  For all my Crusaders-to-be?  I may have patience, but not that much.)

See, I was born in 2004.  And cleared a lot of this content in my day (uphill, in the snow, both ways), but got no benefit from doing so.  Today, reputation with the cities, something you newbies have no need for, can most easily be achieved by ripping your content asunder.  Blasting it to smithereens.  Removing it from existence.

No, I’m simply going to put some a’fearing into your mobs, revist the starting zones, and run around in dumb dog form and bite stuff like I was some rabid druid or something.  Consecrate, for goodness sake.

If that pile of murlocs lingers far longer than you’d expect it to, yep, that’s me.  Farming rep.  Sorry for the mess, and the inconvenience to you.

From my Shaman, my Hunter, my Paladin, to you.

 
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Posted by on September 16, 2009 in Musings

 

All over the board

Lately,

The wife’s been playing Warhammer using 30-day cards.  She enjoys the fast pace of the PvP, the come as you are, as often as you want, pace of the activity, without having to be in a guild, raid, or party even.  This isn’t just the scenarios, but the RvR action as well.  She also appreciates the graphic quality of the game.  When she next re-ups for another 30 days I’ll probably join her and check out what’s changed since I was last in.  If I do, I’ll concentrate more on the PvP side of things.  (I already have a fun PvE game.)

I decided not to continue my LotRO account.  At level 34 I managed to acquire 2 gold and some silver.  Before I boarded the ship sailing for the Undying Lands I sent all my money to my wife’s main character, a Rune Keeper, and she’ll get herself a horse in a few short levels.  I was playing a Warden.  Maybe it’s my age, maybe it’s my miserable hand-eye coordination (though jousting in WoW comes easy), but I wasn’t getting the Warden’s Gambits.  It was not a responsive tanking class.  A Warrior’s (and Paladin’s, and Druid’s) taunts are instant.  They tell a mob “Get your butt over here.  NOW!”  A Warden builds up gambits.  First you use a “fist” ability, which is always accompanied by a yell.  YARRRRR.  Then you may use a “shield” ability.  This has a satisfying shield slam sound.  Then you use another “fist” ability.  Meaning another loud yell YARRRRRRR.  (You still don’t have aggro guaranteed.)  Then you play your gambit.  Did that get the aggro?  Maybe.  Was it fist-shield-fist?  Or was it fist-fist-shield?  Or spear-fist-fist.  (Oh, it’s not 3 abilities.  It’s many abilities, each of which is one the three types.)  Taunt.  Maybe I should have played a Guardian.  I wanted to like the game.  And there’s much to like.  Oh, we got to the point where we didn’t know where to go.  All the quests we had to do were Fellowship quests.  And the Chapters are “gated” so you had to get through certain instances.  Since I was playing a Tank character I wanted to be good at it before having a group rely on me.  I wasn’t there, not with the Warden, and thus had run myself into a deadend of my own creation.  And repeating content?  Uh, not if I don’t have to.

I downloaded Dungeons and Dragons Online.  Since it’s free to play now.  (They sell you stuff, RMT I guess, like extra character slots, certain character classes, i.e. nothing you can’t live without.)  The graphics are very nice.  Like LotRO but another world.  The tropical island you start on with the snow falling, and the fishmen, is very nice looking.  The action commands are opposite to LotRO (and Warhammer and WoW) which meant my sword was doing swinging all over the place.  The wife and I both tried Paladins and knocked out a few quests.  It’s not bad.  And actually very good for being totally free.  One thing I absolutely like: adjustable dungeon/instance sizes.  If you want to solo it, tell it you’re solo as you enter.  In a group?  Tell it you’re in a group.  I’d still be in LotRO if it could simply have been my wife and I going through the “fellowship” quest instances.  (I don’t need it to be easy.  Just possible.)

Otherwise I’m solidly in WoW right now.  My Hunter donned heirloom leather shoulders and chest at level 74, and still using the blue quest reward weapon from the Borean Tundra quest, blasted apart Zul’Drak content.  He even managed to get into an Amphitheater group.  He did every quest but the two group quests and is 1 quest short of completing Fo Shizzle my Grizzle achievement.  Uh, wait, wrong zone.  Whatever it’s called in Zul’Drak!  ;)  Then he went and made Hemet Nesingwary proud in Sholazar Basin.  (I need to go back to Nagrand and knock out those quests of his there to get the achievement for completing all of Hemet’s quests.)  He’s 79 now, in a very short amount of time.  (That +20% xp really does work.)  He’s surprisingly capable, and his pet, the demon dog from Zul’Drak, is a very capable killing machine.

Working on the goodies they offer to Champions, my Hunter, Shaman, and Paladin are all working on Argent Crusade reputation by doing the Pa’Troll dailies.  The Hunter is still working his way through the first Valiant stage.  The Shaman’s graduated, but is now working on getting exalted with everyone.  It’s funny, but my oldest characters had the least reputation with the cities.  Like they’d never been there.  My tournament goals remain: Hunter to get epic staff and rifle.  My Shaman and Warrior to outfit my Goblin Warlock in Dreadmist and skull staff with the swirling skulls.  My Druid will worry about the Worgen recruit.

What I’d read about the next expansion, even though it’s only 5 levels, it sounds like there’ll be another big gear reset.  What I’ve heard is they’re wanting to slow down the pace of the PvP, and the boss fights, by greatly increasing our health pools.  Obviously they can’t improve existing gear, since the damage output from currently existing dangers would also have to go up in order to keep the pacing.  So that means gear from level 81-85 is what’s going to see the big bump up in health (i.e. Stamina).  And that will relegate level 80 Epics, of any iLevel available today, to the trash heap by 85.  (And that’s certainly what they’re intending on doing with such a implementation.)  Since I’m not raiding, or even worrying about it, iLevel 187 (i.e. crafted blues and epics) are going to be plenty fine for what I do today.  And knowing the reset is coming, eventually, inevitably, how much blood, sweat, and tears am I willing to sacrifice in the name of gear upgrades?  Not much.  Not when I have some characters not yet level 80.

 
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Posted by on September 14, 2009 in Musings

 

Remember

world_trade_center

 
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Posted by on September 11, 2009 in Uncategorized

 

What happens in Hillsbrad, stays in Hillsbrad

whatstaysinhillsbrad

Yes, there’s a little bit of awkwardness here.  (And this’ll be our little secret.)

Now, in my 30′s, the Horde Forsaken want me to kill the Dalaran folks.  Once I’m level 80 I’ll be working on Kirin Tor reputation.  And working for the Argent Crusade.  They’re going to be pinning medals on me once I’m in Northrend for crying out loud.

Here, I’m killing the ones they left behind.  Good thing there’s no details like criminal records following me around.

That, and Dalaran here, the outskirts outside the bubble line, looks like some stone medieval town, heavy northern rock and timber construction.  After being ripped out of the earth and moved a thousand miles to the north to float over the Crystal Forest, it’s all of sudden become home to 1,001 Nights, Baghdad and Ali Baba, and all that.  (The banks have the clearest middle eastern influence in their architecture.)  Did Dalaran, sometime during it’s flight, get transmogrified?

It’s like I started one book, and in the middle I return it to the shelf, and pick up another book, and starting from the middle, read it to it’s conclusion.  They may be set in the same universe, but they aren’t the same story.

Anyway.  What happens in Hillsbrad, stays in Hillsbrad.

 
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Posted by on September 7, 2009 in Musings

 

Faction change doesn’t go far enough

Apparently, along with the new faction change, you can pick any race of the opposing faction you want that can be your class.  And when you revert back to the original faction, for another $30.00, you can pick any race you want that can be your class.  So, unless I’m mistaken, you can turn your Gnome Warrior into an Orc Warrior, $30.00, and then turn your Orc Warrior into a Night Elf Warror, $30.00.  (Which you probably always wanted to be anyway, short stuff.)

Hmm.  My Level 80 Tauren Shaman.  My wife doesn’t really have a character to partner with him.  Her Tauren Hunter is in her 30′s.  Power leveling, casually, only speeds you up a little bit.

So how do I take this character and impart some meaning into his existence?  Faction Change!  Except it would be to a Draenei.  Uh, hmmm.  Trouble is, aside from the tentacles sprouting from his once proud bovine features, and he’d still not have a partner on the wife’s side, he’d still be a Shaman.

It’s not a bad character.  There’s nothing he can’t burn through.  Even dropping a few iLevels regearing himself for Enhancement, stuff dies, quests are completed.  There’s nothing broken here.  (Naturally, to be a raider, and have DPS worthy of letting me refer to myself as “I’m DPS,” I’m too far behind the raiders to even think about rejoining their ranks.  I’d have to farm Heroics, then Naxx, then Ulduar, then ToC… just to catch up.  Because, according to MaxDPS, I’m pretty much “done” with what “casual” gets me, then it’d just be stupid money in the AH, or joining a guild with the capability of farming instances.)  Whew.  That said, my Shaman’s what he is.  And to be a Draenei in those shoes would be no different.  (Ah, ha, ha.  Did I say “in those shoes?”  Both races are hooved.)

So, give me a Class change.

But then, what class am I missing?  I have everything on my main server except a Mage and a Warlock, and I’m going to correct that with Worgens and Goblins.

But if a Class change never comes, maybe I’ll take up heavy drinking and become a Dwarven Shaman.  Wildhammers indeed.

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2009 in Musings

 

I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday for a Heirloom today.

I’m not at all surprised that today’s heirlooms won’t be extended 80-85 when the expansion hits.

I mean they’re already the end-all be-all for leveling up 1-80.  It would have been absurd to think they’d change them with the expansion and let you wear those polished valor spaulders all the way to level 85.  Going 5 levels without them, or even with them, isn’t even going to make much of a dent in your hitting level 85.

Now I did see a Warlock the other day in the Argent Tournament tent.  Level 80.  Equipped with Dreadmist robes and shoulders, wielding Darkmaster Gandling’s staff.  He’s still working with the heirloom gear.  (And the guild he was in are big-time raiders.  Even raiders have Alts.  (Hint, hint, Blizzard!  Please provide more than 10 character spots with the expansion.))

Now I’m going to admit some of my decision on which heirlooms to get first was: Is this going to be useful to my level 80 character too at some point?  The answer is “No.”

But leveling up my Goblin Warlock, from his first access to a mailbox, till he hits level 80, he’s going to be leveling up in style.  (And riding earlier, and flying sooner, magic carpet even, and enjoying a new, a renewed, world to explore.  “Time is money, friend.”)

And if the expansion won’t arrive till 2010 (which I find so hard to believe, but then again we’ve had WotLK for 9 months now) and I’ve got time enough to farm heirlooms, spares even, and transfer them to other servers.

Will there be 1-85 heirloom items?  Why not?  Rather than being the “Dungeon” set, they could mirror the “Tier 1″ items next.  (But the absolute coolest looking shoulders had to be the Shaman Tier 2 ones, the wolves with lightning arcs.  Now that would make for one spiffy heirloom piece.  Maybe best to skip “Tier 1″ retreads and get the “Tier 2′s” next.  I mean, what Rogue or Druid’s going to want to sport the “D-Cups” for 85 levels???)

 
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Posted by on September 1, 2009 in Musings

 
 
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