Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Soloing Northrend: Utgarde Keep

Are you ready, Internet?


A Note: I'm going to be doing all of these as a druid in badge gear, no outside buffs unless I'm wiping too much.

Utgarde Keep

Zone in, take a look around, and put up Mark of the Wild- this will be important later. Get in kitty form, hit prowl, and start weaving through mobs and patrols.

I'm not sure if you can stealth through the first two mobs. I forget about that useful ability until I was halfway through the forge room.

Either way, first pull: Root one of the mobs, change to bear, and kill the other guy. If you feel like you are taking too much damage, use Demoralizing Roar.

You can dodge and weave through the next room, easy. I marked the patrollers for you.

Sneaksneaksneak into the forge area. You have to kill the groups here, sorry. Root one of the mobs, go bear and eat them up. Remember Demoralizing Roar and don't be afraid to use your cooldowns if you need them.

The next group is exactly the same. Try and Bash Cauterize if you can. After them, we get to the stairs and the dragon room!

You can sneak through here and into the first Cullen's room very quickly. However, you do have to kill the 4 in front of the San'alyn. I rooted one and moonfired the heck out of another. Switch targets when the rune casters put their immunity shields up. Now, here comes the vampire boss. At first I thought, "No big deal. I mean, he can't frost tomb me."

Heh, yeah. That went well.

I can't see doing him, even at my gear level. 15 second stuns where you take damage and and keep getting beaten on, that happen over and over again, are impossible to handle solo. However, since he is low level, with MotW up you may be able to resist the vast majority of them. I decided to skip him and start prowling towards the next bosses.

You can sneak through here with no trouble. Be careful of the geists; they run really quickly.
After this, you reach the first (and only) mobs here that can detect stealth: wolfies.

Go up the stairs and, if you're lucky, you can dodge the patroling wolfie. If not, kill it. Up the stairs, and through the tunnel, you'll come to the next bosses. They are ridiculously easy to kill. Glyphed maul and swipe are your friends here.

Keep on stealthing. I didn't have to kill a single mob until Mr. The Plunderer after these two.
Speaking of Mr. The Plunderer, he's cake. Run out of the way of Smash and he goes down like

Grats on soloing Utgarde Keep! Next up, the Nexus!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Soloing Northrend Dungeons: Introduction

Well. I've decided AoaC (acronyms FTW) needs something. Like a project. Everyone always loves watching people suffer over incredibly difficult goals.

Are you ready, dear readers, for my screams of frustration?

To this end, I've decided to dust off my super-geared tank, Laia, and send after the Northrend dungeons with murder on her mind. I'll be starting with Utgarde Keep, which I'll have up in a few days.


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Stolen From Saniel of Primal Precision- What Wows You in WoW?

Well! I apologize for my, actually, I don't, because the dreadfully tedious business of RL has kept me from anything except sleeping+work for the past few days. So there. Deal with it.

With all due friendliness, of course.

-Random thoughts: Are you allowed to use emoticons in posts? Is that morally wrong, somehow?-

Well, according to Saniel (That's Saniel, of Primal Precision . On my sidebar. Go. Read.) Blog Azeroth has a shared topic up about your best moments in WoW. Or something like that. So, I obviously stole it from him and decided to post about it in the bit of spare time I have today.

Hmmm. What wows me in WoW...well...a lot of thing, really. The great, beautiful starlit forest in Teldrassil where Laia took her first steps. Seeing Stormwind City, then Ironforge for the first time. The creepy vastness of the Undercity. The time when Tiglath and I ran to explore the Tirisfal Glades at level 20. My first mount. When I hit 60 and was so proud of my little mage.

The time when just before TBC, I took a trip down to the Caverns of Time. AND IT WAS HUGE! And so pretty, and cool, and I wandered around for hours staring at it all.

The sun rising in Mulgore and the moon on the water in Auberdine. The first time Laia ever tanked a raid. The time I raid-lead Naxx because the leader had to leave (without ever having been there before). The time when the same thing happened with Ulduar, and we got all the way to Kologarn.

The first time I came to Icecrown and did it properly, all of the questchains and plotlines meshing together as one. The sense of ancient horror, hidden by the snow and ice, is so prevalent through the whole zone.

The harpoon-surfing quest in the Howling Fjord. Getting my Netherdrake. Finishing the Epic Flight Form questchain. Killing Lord Marrowgar when only 3 DPS and I were still standing. Going to the Black Temple for the first time. The time when Hiemalis got the Ironman achievement in Warsong Gulch because the whole raid pulled together to help her.

The Storm Peaks and the questchain with Thorim. Flying around a huge pinnacle, leaping from dragon to dragon with my spear in hand. The time that my guildleader on my RP realm stepped down and passed the reins onto me. When I first became an officer in that same guild.

World of Warcraft is made up of memories. Before you decide that Blizzard is out to get you, step back and take a look at a world of such beauty and all the memories you have in it.

That's what wows me in WoW.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Trial by Fire

Today, I dusted off Liselle, my 75 warrior, and decided to throw her into the Random Dungeon Finder. "How hard could it be, really?" I asked myself as my party filled with DPS in the blink of an eye. "I mean, I've tanked everything from Sartharion to Deathbringer Saurfang. This should be easy!"

But oh no. It was not easy.

Warrior tanking is so confusing! There are so many buttons to push- no reliable AOE like swipe or even something to throw down like consecrate. Shouts, interrupts, disarms, AOEs that do just shy of nothing, and 5 defensive cooldowns stared at me out from my cluttered bar.

I informed the party of my ineptitude, and set to work.

Goodness, was it hard. Thunderclap was completely incapable of holding group aggro, so I eventually settled for frantically alt-tabbing while spamming Devastate and Heroic Strike. It was a tad bit hard on my fingers, but after two wipes I managed to get into the groove of things. Mobs actually started hitting me, praise be to Elune!

Looking back, I suppose that using Cleave might have made my life easier.

The first instance I got into was Drak'tharon Keep, palace of the Hakkar Wannabe. After I stumbled through that, miracles of miracles, a few members of my party actually wanted to run again with me. Shocking, right? I grabbed a guild healer one of my dear friends was leveling, threatened him with death and dismemberment if he didn't come and hold my hand through the next dungeon, and tossed him an invite. Together with a charming shadow priest, I clicked Find Random Dungeon.

And it was Ahn'kanet, a hellhole even on my Druid.

Ok, ok. No big deal. I've...I've...yeah, we're screwed.

Surprisingly, we only ever wipe once, on Miss Jedoga Shadowseeker. That enrage is impossible. Otherwise, we go along quite fine and dandy, my large repertoire of stuns and horrified screams for the DPS to interrupt keeping the Spellflingers unable to ever finish their Shadow Blasts. The only exciting moment was when, before Jedoga, we pulled a group of four casters right before a patrol walked into the healer.

At that moment, I was grateful for the warrior defensive cooldowns. I blew Challenging Shout. Last Stand, Shield Wall, Shield Block, Battle Rage, Beserker Rage, and both of my trinkets, and
I kept those mobs off my healer.

We pulled through, 2 of the DPS dying in the process. I tanked that awful pull like I was on my invincible druid. And because it was actually hard, it felt pretty good when they bit the dust.

That's a big thing I noticed while I was on little Liselle. Everything wasn't a cakewalk. I couldn't charge down the hallways, swiping as I went and pulling 30 mobs at a time. I had to concentrate and actually work to do well.

It was great.

PS: My faithful readers, I beg of you, if there is any advice you can give me please leave it in the comments. I could definitely use it.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

It's Hard to Pay Attention

I wonder about PUGs these days. "How could mankind fall so far?" I ask myself in despair.

Ego's replies really aren't suited to be read by the public.

You see, Tiglath went about pestering me until I agreed to run his baby shaman (Buccephalas, named after the Elekk of some great Draenei hero, I am told) through a few randoms. Now, you see, Buccephalas is a lowly level 72, so I expected shouts of astonishment from the lucky DPS that we were grouped with when they glanced over and saw my health pool.

But no. Not a word. No one said anything throughout the whole run (we got Azol Nerub) even when I charged in and took the first boss and his three guardians (and their attached trash packs) all at once. I tanked poor Anub'arak in cat form, for crying out loud.

Our next run, Nexus, was a little better. We got a hi, once.

A hi.


That's kind of awesome, right?

But, I mean, really? I try not to go about flexing my ego- I mean, I've met and worked with far better tanks. Sometimes, though, when you're running through Nexus non-stop with a horde on your tail, you want a little recognition, you know? A bit of praise, or a "Wow!" Is that pathetic of me to think?


Ah, well. It was pretty fun all the same.

Monday, March 15, 2010

How to Be a Semi-Successful Raid Leader-The Rambling Version

I've returned! I know you've mourned my absence.

I don't even want to talk about how the competition went (Clue: BADLY) so, onto WoW related subjects.

I completed my two weeklies this week with Eyowyn and Laia. As usual, Eyowyn's runs are a bit trickier than Laia's; the poor mage can't get a break.

For example, as I was merrily bounding along towards poor Razorscale on my Moonsaber, at peace with the world, some idiot in the raid offered a thousand gold to the RL if he would kick me out.

Goodness. I'm sorry, I tried to give a bit of instruction on Flame Leviathan. I figured; hey, it's a vehicle fight, maybe someone hadn't done it before? Apparently, it's heresy. The raid leader, Elune bless his soul, ignored him and we downed Razorscale with me 2nd in DPS. Wootness.

Being a frost mage is awesome. I laugh at the floor: you may hate me and my kind, cover yourself in poison, fire, frost, void energy, spikes, or erupt and send us hurtling to our doom, but with Blink and Ice Barrier at my disposal your days of terror are over. Really, though, Ice Barrier does wonders for minimizing boss AOE damage. Plus, Bubbles is so heroic. He stood water-torso deep in fire so I didn't have to stop casting.

Aren't yoooou the best elemental in the whole world? I wuve you, Bubbles!

Laia, on the other hand, sat about in Trade channel today, desperately advertising her services as a tank, until a priest threw me a whisper.

Snugglypriest: Hey, how about I join you and we form a raid?
Laia: Sure!

/invite Snugglypriest

Snugglypriest apparently had a lot of friends, since after about ten minutes of me screaming in Dalran we had a full group and were on our way to Ulduar.

Do you know how many whispers you get when asking for DPS in Trade? A freakin' ton, that's how many. And because I am a good and kindly soul, I felt obliged to sift through them all with, "Sorry, we're full."

Flame Leviathan fell within 39 SECONDS, restoring my faith in the fraction of humanity that knows how to use Pyrite, and under my polite instruction we finished off Razorscale. I had a druid volunteer to tank, and thus assumed that he was a cat throwing on the iron hide of a bear for the first time.

Then, I glanced over and saw he had 60k health. My goodness.

So, I threw on cat and he tanked Razor....and I totally forgot about Fuse Armor. So, it was to my shock that I noticed Razor was beating on my purple-furred kitty self.


I changed form and smashed survival instincts, frenzied regeneration, and barkskin while praying to the Lady RNG for a swift and merciful death. Happily, Razor keeled over before the Lady made up her mind.

So, what was the point of this post?


People like small words. And simple, to the point instructions. That's all you need to raid lead a PUG.

Good night!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Assume I'm saying this like the current governor of California

I'll be back!

I'll be heading off to a competition and won't be back til Sunday/Mondayish. Don't have too much fun without me XD

Thursday, March 11, 2010

In Which My Ego Introduces itself

Well, since my disclosure of Ghostcrawler's secrets has gone so over so well, I...I....what is this? What-what is happening? This sudden! It can't be!

Run, run while you still--

Silence, mortal. You are mine now- can you not feel it? Your thoughts turn to your triumphs, you grow eager to share them with the world, to loudly proclaim your superiority over the lesser beings.

An audience?

Hmmph. Greetings, creatures. My name is Hubris, but you may simply call me Ego. I dwell within the dark recesses of every flesh-being in this wretched world. There are some whose minds are closer to me, who are...privileged, in what I grant them. There is no shame, under my control. Humility does not exist. I am the hand behind every Recount-spamming DPSer, every moron that announces his achievements in the Trade Channel, in every being that bellows, "heal ffs lol." And now, even dear, sweet Saffron is mine. Perhaps, only for the moment, but she can not stop me now.

To business: My host's principal achievement ma
in, Eyowyn, had the uncanny fortune to be in a Gundrak PUG. She and her companions (a pathetic bunch, I assure you) fought their way to Slad'ran, the snake lord. And my host managed, in a ragged mix of epics and blues, as a frost mage who had thrown her points wherever they seemed best, to do this:
I am not sure of how legible this picture is, so I will elaborate.

Eyowyn did 6,300 DPS.



Ego, get out!

Fine...I've done what I came here for, anyhow. Farewell, mortals...we shall meet again.

Oh, goodness, I'm sorry. Ego...well, he gets pretty stubborn. But I am pretty proud of what I pulled in that heroic.


He's probably going to start gloating.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Cataclysm and the Shiny Things We Get at 85

In the spirit of having sore feet and an extremely wearying day, I've decided to run through the classes and showcase the new spells they will get at 85. Obviously, Mr. Ghostcrawler himself told me all of this, face to face.

Death Knights: Whispers of the Departed
10 Runic Power
Instant Cast
You fill the minds of your enemies with the endless cries of the damned, reducing their attack power by 1,500 for 30 seconds.

Druids: Nightmare Touch
Usable in All Forms
5% base mana, 20 energy, 15 rage 2 minute cooldown
Instant Cast
The power of the tainted Dream courses through you, inflicting a terrible curse on your enemy. The wild and chaotic nature of the Emerald Nightmare may occasionally pervert the spellcasting
(Curse silences an enemy with a mana for 5 seconds and drains 5,000 mana. Curse decimates an enemy without a mana bar, reducing their damage done by 3% and causing 10,000 damage)

Hunters: Elemental Shot
5% base mana 6 second cooldown
Instant Cast
The hunter channels the power of the Elemental Planes into a shot that inflicts (not unreasonably high number) frostfire damage.

Paladins: Zeal 10 minute cooldown
Instant Cast
Call upon the light to increase the critical hit chance of your party and raid members by 10% for 30 seconds. Causes Unworthy, which prevents recipients of the buff from benefiting from Zeal for 5 minutes.

Priests: Celestial Pillar 2 minute cooldown
2 second cast
Divine power explodes around you, knocking enemies back 20 yards while restoring 5% of your mana and increasing your spellpower by 500 for 10 seconds

Mages: Master of Magic 3 minute cool down
Instant Cast Passive Ability
The mage becomes one with the forces of Arcane, Frost, and Fire, increasing all damage done by 20%. This ability steadily drains mana, the rate increasing over time.

Shaman: Spiritsong 6 second cool down
10% of base mana
Instant Cast
Requires Active Air Totem
Waves of unearthly energy pulsate from the Shaman's air totem, causing 2000 damage per second to enemies within 20 yards for ten seconds.

Warlocks: Archdemon 10 minute cooldown
50% of base mana
Instant Cast
Channels the powers of one of the greatest demons of the Burning Legion into your currently summoned demon, increasing its damage by 500% and attack speed by 300%.

Warrior: Reaper 6 second cooldown
20 rage
Instant Cast
Instantly attack an enemy, doing 80% of your base damage. If the target is affected by Rend, this attack does 200% of base damage. If your target dies from this attack, you gain 5% of your health back.

Monday, March 8, 2010

The Quest for Loremaster and Random Thoughts

Yup, that's right. Little Eyowyn is on her way to Loremaster, with Northrend done this weekend and Outland on its way. Of course, the old world is going to take the longest to complete, but that's what summer is for.

There are rumors it will go "poof" when Cataclysm comes around...and, as my devotees may know, I am a title fanatic. Plus, I can get Seeker with this too!

With a combination of threats, blackmail, and bribery I've coerced one of my dearest friends into playing again. She has a 60 mage and a DK, and sadly my resto/enchance baby shaman is just a bit too low to play with her. So, time to grind a few levels. My DK is high enough to group with her, but quite frankly, I loathe them. Plus, my shaman does more DPS, and she's 14 levels lower.

I repeat. 14.

-Some time later-

The commander in the Nexus squished me. That's just sad.

I'm soloing all these group quests and feeling awesome because I remember how hard they were at 80. Die, Sons of Gruul!

You know, once I had a goal in mind for this post. It went away. Too bad.

Friday, March 5, 2010

There is no Defense Cap for Real Life

I don't think I've even launched WoW since I've gotten my Elder title. I'm being pounded into the dust by various know, staying up late, getting up early, and still feeling crushed by the amount of work I have to do. Woot.

I've read all the new Cataclysm information...and, well, mostly I'm just thinking, "Ok. So, some pint-sized gnome is going to have more health than me. Cool."

It's all very confuzzling. And if you dare say that "confuzzling" is not a word, I will beat you over the head with a mace UNTIL YOU DIE.

Ahem. So, gearing will be a lot simpler, awesome, and MP5 dies in a fire. This all sounds good to me. I wonder what they are going to make hunters use instead of mana? Energy, maybe? And what will Aspect of the Viper become?

I personally think hunters should have some form of stealth. Camouflage, the new level 85 hunter ability. It could be like Evasion, too, increasing your chance to dodge by some ridiculous number.

Speaking of which...that gives me an idea....

Anyways! See you eventually, beloved and faithful readers. The 2 of you that exist. Or maybe 3. I'll go with three.

Monday, March 1, 2010