Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Not Done Yet

With the abundance of nostalgia posts floating around, you might think I’d jump in as well.
But no, not Hine!

I haven’t posted much because:
1) I’ve been very busy with RL stuff. In addition to the day job, I’ve been working at least as many hours on a ‘side’ job, leaving very little time for much else. I haven’t even raided much recently.
2) As a raiding-focused DK, there just hasn’t been much new to write about for the remainder of the Lich King expansion.

But I’m Not Done Yet!
I may not write a whole lot until just before or even just after Cataclysm release, but I certainly plan to return to my ‘typical’ blogging ways when we have more to write about. I never got a beta invite, so I don’t have much pre-Cataclysm stuff to discuss, and even though I’m on PTR now, I’m still waiting for the dust to settle on the class before posting much.

So, what’s happening in the Hine camp now?

-Zombie Raiding. My guild, like most, is mostly going through the motions. When I’m able to make raids, we quickly bolt through Icecrown Heroic, kill Lich King on normal, do the weekly raid, VOA, and maybe a side raid or two. 2-3 nights later, there isn’t much going on. The raids are a jumble of joking, lack of focus, and general malaise. Many of my guildies are sleepwalking through the raids, and who can blame them. It’s time for something new and different, and the motivation to push Hard Mode Halion or LK just isn’t there. So, we’ll do what we can, raid, maybe do a little 10-man raids, and wait for Cata.

-Preparing Hine for the Change. No, not that change – she’s undead for goodness sake! I don’t think offspring were ever in her future anyway, but no, no worries about hot flashes for her!
I’m hoping to take a week off the week of release to try to level as quickly as possible. A server first Death Knight/Draeni would be lovely, but just the fun of immersing myself in the new content for a week will be worth it (as it was for LK release; I was the Alliance first DK, but one Hordie beat me to 80. Still, it was an amazing experience).
I’ll have a nice surplus of buff foods/flasks etc to max my leveling experience, and yes, I plan to level fully buffed as much as possible.
I’ve already dropped Blacksmithing (keeping JC) and leveled mining to 450. I’ll mine as I level and as much as possible the first couple weeks of the expansion. First priority will be to obtain enough materials to powerlevel my JC and BS professions to the new max level as quickly as possible, and secondly to make some extra gold for the expansion. I already have the materials set aside to level BS back to 450, so I’ll just need the new Cataclysm mats.
I’ll spend enough time on the PTR to be familiar with the new rotations and talents so that it won’t slow me down as I level in the ‘new’ ‘old’ Azeroth. Since I already have a 310% mount, all I’ll need to purchase will be the relatively inexpensive flying skill for Azeroth and I’ll be off! I’m already almost as ready as I can be, but I’ll do everything I can to be prepared.

Other than that, in my remaining time available, I’m just playing around. I’m very slowly leveling a mage, Hinetapeka, and my warlock (75) gets an occasional turn through a daily dungeon before going back in the garage.

I can’t wait for Cataclysm!

Friday, September 3, 2010

I Went to Icecrown and all I got was this Lousy Screenshot

Icecrown is where it's at. Not Dragonblight, which has these little diversionary 'raids,' requiring us to run around a big room and learn one real boss fight. Certainly not that glowing spiraly purpley tower on the edge of the Borean Tundra.

Icecrown is where the Frozen Throne is. The Big Bad Lich King. Frostmourne. Nemesis of all, but particularly so for Death Knights who have experienced the half-life of being in his thrall. So, in the waning days of the second World of Warcraft expansion, it's still where raiders find themselves come time to join with their band of 25 or so plucky adventurers, finding what challenges they may, and overcoming them!

In my case, we've been doing the Glory of the Icecrown Raider achievements, and while a few of them were tricky (the tank swaps of Sindragosa's Buffet in particular), last night we found ourselves with only the Neck Deep in Vile achievement separating us from our mounts of skeletal swiftness. On two previous nights, we'd successfully gotten LK down to 1% before his explosion when a Vile Spirit hit someone. Unfortunately it was too late to keep from killing LK and we failed the achievement. Both times it was too late to wipe and the Lich King died without giving us our due. We were determined not to fail this time, and carefully modifying our kite path to ensure no wayward defiles were dropped in the middle, we managed to defeat him without encountering any Vile Spirits, although we still had to check our logs after the explosion to make sure.

Riding the exhilaration of the moment - and our shiny new mounts - we decided to see if we could accomplish an achievement sweepstakes for the week. We'd only just the previous week killed Anub'Arak in TOGC as a guild for the first time. I know, I know - that is SOOO 2009, but Insomnia had been working on the fight late last year, only to drop it when ICC opened. Now, in better gear the fight is certainly easier, but with better gear also comes more health, which means more healing for Anub in P3. We actually wiped quite a few times in getting that first kill.

We'd already cleared the first 4 bosses in TOGC without the careless mistakes that results in wipes on old content. 50 attempts remaining on Anub. Soulstones were placed on our misdirecting hunters who are so fond of attracting shadowstrikes. And we did what we so rarely have done; focused on our first pull, defeating the Beetle on our first try!

A few people had mentioned that they thought this hadn't been done by the other guilds on the server, and confirmation arrived in the announcement realm-wide of a realm first achievement! :) Many reading this will scoff, for it is an old achievement, but still one that is undone on the majority of realms. Trade was an interesting place to be afterward, with the mix of "you stupid nooobs, you suck. This server sux. Ally sucks!" along with congratulations from other raiders on the server.

In any case, my screenshot addon was apparently on the fritz, so all I have for you is this haphazard snapshot of the last few achievements, with my drake peeking from behind the window. Sorry.

I went to Icecrown, and all I got was this Lousy Screenshot.

Still, it was a fun night that reminded us of why we do this thing called Wow.

Have a great weekend!