July 09, 2013

Fanciful Wishlist: In-Game Store Edition

Hey there! It's been a while, eh? Don't know if I'll ever manage to keep this blog regular again - what's the equivalent of fibre for blogs? - but I've spent all day being flippant about the possible 5.4 in-game store announcement for (only) the Asian region and affectionately overpredicting the coming apocalypse. Long sentences are the best.

Anyway, I got to thinking about what I'd want to see in the in-game store if it could be free of consequences or unfairness for others and came up with this wishlist of really cool things*

1) Armor dyes

I don't think this will be a surprise to anyone. Transmogrification is brilliant but sometimes what I want to do is take [Stormrider's Shoulderwraps] and dye them white, you know? It's not particularly immersion-breaking either, as all 4 types of armor are shown in a variety of colours already. If you follow the route other MMOs have taken you can incorporate the manufacture of some dyes into a profession to provide options in and out of the in-game shop. Herbalists making dyes would be pretty cool and would bring new life to arguably the most boring profession this expansion.

2) Weapon dyes

Similarly, being able to change the colour of our weapon blades or components would be amazing. You can bet your last country-specific mid-value currency I'd have a light blue sword blade if I was playing a frost mage, black daggers for a rogue, or that I'd switch up [Damnation] to be white with gold accents for my priest.

3) Runic blades/enchantment overlays/animated effects for weapons

Moving runes, yes please! Mogging your favourite enchant effects or adding the dynamic effects (rocks/petals/leaves) seen on some weapons to your current ones would be great. Some of the effects in game are fantastic and it's always a shame to lose the look of them when the game moves on.

4) Invisible belt/other slots that effectively hide that slot

Last in the mogging area, this is something that's been on people's minds for a while. Give us item skins like [Sandrene's Invisible Vest] that were allowed for mogging and extended to slots like shoulders, belts, bracers, gloves...it would allow for some fantastically coordinated mogs.

5) Hooded cloaks

Nothing deep behind this, I just want cool hooded cloaks so I can look like a badass.

6) Pet reskins

Lots of pets have more than one skin already so I would want more skins for my pets. A purple Minfernal instead of a green one! A choice of metal skins for my mechanical pets! More fur colours for beasts and critters!

7) 10 Imperial Silkworms = 1 Imperial Moth

Seriously, I am swimming in [Imperial Silkworms] nowadays. How about a way to trade the more common procs for their rarer counterparts for pets and Darkmoon Faire hand-ins? We can already trade a Bundle of Groceries made out of excess cooking ingredients in for an Ironpaw token, which can they be used to buy a sack of other ingredients at Halfhill Market. More of these trade opportunities, please!

At this point I ran out of ideas that could reasonably be sold within the current game and started veering into the territory of new things the game could contain, like visible quivers for hunters - how cool would those be - so I asked the twitter hivemind what they would like to see in the in-game store in this hypothetical scenario:

  • Additional void storage slots
  • Armor dyes - a lot of people mentioned this!
  • Leather red Defias Mask
  • Hats - agreed
  • Belt/gloves/bracers hiding items - it's not just me!
  • Wand that zaps griefers back to PvP servers
  • Alexstrasza's cloak - also agreed, there are never enough cloak options and that one is so nice
  • Rare pets/mounts - if we can get them from the BMAH instead of farming, that same list of hard-to-find drops should be available in the store, frankly
  • If WoW went F2P accounts, for the store to contain all the things that subbed accounts continued to get without paying any extra
  • Gnome paladins - agreed, as long as gnome druids were a thing too
  • Purchaseable levels - probably the biggest idea anyone replied with
  • Profession boosts

It's really interesting to see what other players would like to see change in WoW! So I put it to you -  what would you want in an in-game store if it was free of consequences or unfairness for others? 

Big thanks to Wowhead and the Mogit addon for help finding the items I've linked to!

*Your opinion may vary from that of the author.

July 15, 2012

Weeks 26-27: Breakthrough!

I did it! I pushed through the lack of motivation, with tremendous success (for me, anyway):
  • Wildlight is now 83
  • Lóthwen is now 37
  • Enchanting is at 491
  • Engineering is at 352
  • Inscription is at 297
After I asked for ideas last time, Rades suggested the Midsummer bonfires for a big chunk of XP, which I'd resisted doing but knew I should, so on the very last day I pushed right until the festival disappeared and did about half of them. It took me up to 75 and I ran some random dungeons until I hit 76, at which point I decided to go questing in Sholazar Basin.

Wildlight hitting 85 by extinguishing a Horde bonfire (FOR THE ALLIANCE!)

I'd forgotten how much I like that zone! The quests are varied, the Frenzyheart are hilarious and the Kungaloosh-making quest is fun. I ran random dungeons while I was questing and managed to hit 80 before I knew it! I can't really explain how much of a relief it was to be done with Northrend without having to do Icecrown or Storm Peaks again.

Wildlight hitting level 80 in Halls of Lightning

Having a max-level tailor was an absolute boon, as I could craft an entire Deathsilk set to replace my Wrath gear and by 81 I was completely decked out in Cataclysm greens/blues. The AH was kind to me too, and I won some good dungeon drops in my first few runs. Having a lot of crafted gear meant I could hold my own in terms of DPS too and I've not had a single snarky comment (unlike the first Wrath dungeon I did), despite still using the heirloom head and cloak. Mind-controlling adds like the Spiritmenders in Throne of Tides has been good fun too.

Shadow priesting has been really entertaining since I got Mind Sear - AoE, finally! - and I feel like I'm getting the hang of keeping my DoTs up, managing procs and temporary buffs, remembering to use cooldowns and all the jazz. When I hit 83 I could finally put a talent point in Archangel! WINGS.

Wildlight with Archangel wings!

My DK gatherer has been mining up ore for Engineering and that's at the cobalt stage now, which is great because I have cobalt nodes on Gatherer from back when I was mining up Jewelcrafting/Blacksmithing materials. There's some regret that I didn't have the drive to level it as I levelled the character, because I missed out on using some things that aren't as fun anymore, but that's a lesson learnt. Enchanting has taken care of itself mostly, with the help of my hoarded materials from other characters. I'm onto the Cataclysm mats but I'm not going to buy any because I'll eventually have enough if I'm patient.


My Frigid Frostling stood in the fires of the forge AND DIDN'T MELT. It demands I worship it as a God. This picture has no relevance to this post.

Lóthwen the mage has jumped up quite a few levels now that I didn't need the shoulder, chest and weapon heirlooms on my priest anymore and I didn't have to worry about losing their mog appearances. Playing as a fire mage has been good but I feel like I don't get enough time to do damage in dungeons before things are dead, so yesterday I sorted out an arcane spec for instancing. Hopefully that'll make things quicker and simpler!

Lothwen hitting level 30

Levelling inscription has been fun and simple, and I'm now focusing on getting to level 50 before the next Darkmoon Faire ends, so that my +5 points quest isn't wasted. The level restrictions on each stage of professions make sense but are sometimes a little annoying. I'll have to find the energy to take the DK back to Outland to gather herbs but I have a lot of pigments already from my hoarded herbs so it might be a minimal grind.

I'm hoping that I can hold on to this enthusiasm. Wildlight is so close to 85, and Lóthwen is the last professioned alt I needed to focus on. If I can just push through in the next month and get them both to max level, I can finally start on Loremaster with Ara!

July 01, 2012

Weeks 22 - 25: Being Lazy

So. I uh...hmm. Let's be honest here, and say that I've been really lazy about levelling, reluctant to start Loremaster, dabbling in other games and painting my nails. It's not been completely static though:
  • Wildlight is now 72
  • Enchanting is at 416
  • Inscription is at 225
Not much to tell, except that the levelling block on Wildlight is still very much in place. I can't think of a way round it, either :( PvP isn't my thing, dungeons are getting boring, quests are getting boring! This is probably an unavoidable side effect of levelling too many characters during Cataclysm. This would be my 4th character from 0-85 during one expansion and there aren't exactly any new zones to go through >.>


Any ideas would be welcome!

June 14, 2012

Midsummer Fire Festival 2012

A fiery halo! That makes the whole festival worth it, in my book.

The Midsummer Fire Festival is running from 21st June - 4th July and I’m looking forward to completing the Northrend and Cataclysm achievements, which I missed out last year because they didn't contribute to the meta and my sanity was in danger.
EDIT: Frigid Frostling is mine! Keep running it if you haven't got lucky yet, and remember that pets are going account-wide with Mists so run it on every character that's 84 or 85!
In case it’ll help you get one meta closer to What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been, here’s my guide (it's the same as the 2011 one, with some updates).

Achievements needed for the meta:

Burning Blossoms needed for achievements: 405-435 (see below)

The Fires of Azeroth and Desecration of the Alliance/Horde

I used the 2011 Wowhead guide co-ordinates to get me started last year, so the location credit goes to them. All of the co-ordinates for the meta have been visited and double-checked by me personally, and I will be checking the Northrend and Cataclysm ones during the first couple of days this year.
I found some bonfires in my travels that weren't part of the meta achievement but will still give the same rewards. These are marked with asterisks if you want to skip them. My route is from an Alliance perspective so may not be as convenient for Horde players I'm afraid!

Eastern Kingdoms:

Zone
A/H/N
Location
Co-ordinates
The Cape of Stranglethorn
A
East of Booty Bay
51, 67
The Cape of Stranglethorn
H
East of Booty Bay
50, 70
Northern Stranglethorn
A
Fort Livingston
51, 63
Northern Stranglethorn
H
Grom’gol Base Camp
40, 51
Westfall
A
Moonbrook
45, 62
Duskwood
A
Darkshire
73, 55
Blasted Lands
A
Nethergarde Keep
55, 15
Blasted Lands
H
Dreadmaul Hold
46, 14
Swamp of Sorrows*
A
Bogpaddle
70, 14
Swamp of Sorrows
H
Bogpaddle
76, 14
Redridge Mountains
A
Lakeshire
24, 53
Burning Steppes
A
Morgan’s Vigil
68, 60
Burning Steppes
H
Flame Crest
51, 29
Badlands*
A
Dragon’s Mouth
19, 56
Badlands
H
New Kargath
24, 37
Loch Modan
A
Thelsamar
32, 40
Dun Morogh
A
Kharanos
54, 45
Wetlands
A
Menethil Harbor
13, 47
Twilight Highlands*
A
Thundermar
47, 28
Twilight Highlands*
H
Bloodgulch
53, 46
Arathi Highlands
A
Refuge Pointe
44, 46
Arathi Highlands
H
Hammerfall
69, 42
Hinterlands
H
Revantusk Village
76, 74
Hinterlands
A
Aerie Peak
14, 50
Hillsbrad Foothills
H
Tarren Mill
55, 50
The Sepulcher
H
Silverpine Forest
50, 39
Tirisfal Glades
H
The Undercity
68, 9
Tirisfal Glades
H
Brill
57, 52
Western Plaguelands
A
Chillwind Camp
43, 82
Western Plaguelands*
H
The Bulwark
29, 56
Ghostlands
H
Tranquilien
46, 26
Eversong Woods
H
North Sanctum
46, 50
Eversong Woods
H
Silvermoon City (Court of the Sun)
70, 43

Kalimdor:

Zone
A/H/N
Location
Co-ordinates
Bloodmyst Isle
A
Blood Watch
55, 69
Azuremyst Isle
A
Azure Watch
44, 53
Teldrassil
A
Dolanaar
55, 53
Darkshore
A
Lor’danel
49, 23
Winterspring
A
Everlook
61, 47
Winterspring
H
Everlook
58, 47
Mount Hyjal*
N
Nordrassil
63, 23
Azshara*
H
Bilgewater Harbor
60, 53
Durotar
H
Orgrimmar (Valley of Wisdom)
47, 38
Durotar
H
Razor Hill
52, 47
Northern Barrens
H
The Crossroads
50, 55
Ashenvale
H
Silverwind Refuge
51, 66
Ashenvale
A
Forest Song
87, 42
Stonetalon Mountains*
A
Mirkfallon Lake
49, 51
Stonetalon Mountains
H
Sun Rock Retreat
53, 62
Desolace
A
Nijel’s Point
65, 17
Desolace
H
Shadowprey Village
26, 76
Mulgore
H
Thunder Bluff (Spirit Rise)
21, 26
Mulgore
H
Bloodhoof Village
52, 59
Feralas
H
Camp Mojache
72, 47
Feralas
A
Feathermoon Stronghold
47, 44
Southern Barrens
A
Fort Triumph
48, 72
Southern Barrens
H
Desolation Hold
41, 68
Dustwallow Marsh
H
Brackenwell Village
33, 30
Dustwallow Marsh
A
Theramore Isle
62, 40
Tanaris
A
Gadgetzan
52, 29
Tanaris
H
Gadgetzan
49, 27
Un’Goro Crater
A
Marshal’s Stand
60, 63
Un’Goro Crater
H
Marshal’s Stand
56, 66
Silithus
A
Cenarion Hold
60, 33
Silithus
H
Cenarion Hold
51, 41
Uldum*
A
Vir'naal Oasis
53, 32
Uldum*
H
Vir'naal Oasis
53, 34

Outland:

Zone
A/H/N
Location
Co-ordinates
Hellfire Peninsula
H
Thrallmar
57, 41
Hellfire Peninsula
A
Honor Hold
62, 58
Shadowmoon Valley
A
Wildhammer Stronghold
40, 55
Shadowmoon Valley
H
Shadowmoon Village
33, 30
Terokkar Forest
A
Allerian Stronghold
55, 55
Terokkar Forest
H
Stonebreaker Hold
52, 43
Nagrand
A
Telaar
50, 70
Nagrand
H
Garadar
51, 34
Zangarmarsh
H
Zabra’jin
36, 52
Zangarmarsh
A
Telredor
69, 52
Blade’s Edge Mountains
A
Sylvanaar
42, 66
Blade’s Edge Mountains
H
Thunderlord Stronghold
50, 59
Netherstorm
A
Area 52
31, 63
Netherstorm
H
Area 52
32, 68

There are 3 Earthen Ring bonfires which are neutral and award 15 Burning Blossoms each. One is in Mount Hyjal and is part of the Eastern Kingdoms route above. The other two are in:
Vashj'ir, Silver Tide Hollow (49, 42)
Deepholm, Temple of Earth (49, 51)

It's unlikely, but there may be others! Let me know if you find any.

Northrend: These aren’t part of the meta but they do give an achievement and will get you extra experience/gold/blossoms.

Zone
A/H/N
Location
Co-ordinates
Borean Tundra
A
Fizzcrank Airstrip
55, 20
Borean Tundra
H
Bor'gorok Outpost
51, 12
Sholazar Basin
A
River's Heart
47, 66
Sholazar Basin
H
River's Heart
47, 62
Dragonblight
H
Agmar's Hammer
39, 48
Dragonblight
A
Wintergarde Keep
75, 44
Crystalsong Forest
A
Windrunner's Overlook
78, 75
Crystalsong Forest
H
Sunreaver's Command
80, 53
The Storm Peaks
A
K3
42, 87
The Storm Peaks
H
K3
40, 86
Zul'Drak
A
The Argent Stand
41, 61
Zul'Drak
H
The Argent Stand
43, 71
Grizzly Hills
A
Amberpine Lodge
34, 61
Grizzly Hills
H
Conquest Hold
19, 61
Howling Fjord
A
Fort Wildervar
58, 16
Howling Fjord
H
Camp Winterhoof
48, 13

Ice the Frost Lord

You will need to be 84+ to queue for this holiday boss via the Dungeon Finder. The first time you defeat Ahune each day you will get a Satchel of Chilled Goods, which will reward a guaranteed 24 justice points and a chance at:

Frostscythe of Lord Ahune
Ice Chip (gives you Frigid Frostling)
5-15 Burning Blossoms

There are 5 cloaks that have a chance to drop. These are ilvl 353 (equivalent to epics from Zul’Aman/Zul’Gurub):

Cloak of the Frigid Winds
Icebound Cloak
Shroud of Winter’s Chill
The Frost Lord’s Battle Shroud
The Frost Lord’s War Cloak

Currently there’s nothing in the game files to suggest that these couldn’t drop too:

Formula: Enchant Weapon – Deathfrost
Lord of Frost’s Private Label

The first time you defeat this boss you should receive Shard of Ahune, which starts a quest rewarding one of two tabards - Tabard of Summer Flames or Tabard of Summer Skies. It seems that players who completed this quest before 2009 will not see this item drop, but you can restore the tabard at a tabard vendor if you’ve deleted it (these can be found in the Visitor’s Centre of most cities).
CONFIRMED: It is possible to choose one tabard, equip it, delete it and then restore the other option at the tabard NPC. Once you have equipped that, both will count towards the 25 Tabards achievement! I have just done this successfully :D so delete with an easy mind!

King of the Fire Festival

You get this achievement by completing the quest A Thief’s Reward. This involves (you already guessed this was coming, I’m sure) going into each of the 4 enemy capitals and stealing their flames. I know you’re too awesome to be put off by that though. Old World Flying will make this much easier than in previous years so find their fire, fly straight down and steal the flames.

You might die, it's true, but as long as you take their precious flames, it matters not! If you do I'd advise taking the rez sickness, going to find yourself some pie to eat and doing the next one later. I’ll probably do mine early in the morning (6-7am) before work. Pie is a valid breakfast food too, you know.

Burning Hot Pole Dance [requires 400 Burning Blossoms]

For this achievement you need the completed Midsummer Set. This will set you back 400 Burning Blossoms, so get honouring/desecrating those fires! Luckily you’ll be doing that anyway if you want the holiday meta. The good news is that you can collect ~800 blossoms during the holiday so it’ll definitely be possible to buy all 3 parts. Equip them and dance round a ribbon pole for 60 seconds. Voila!

Torch Juggler [requires 5-35 Burning Blossoms]

Juggle 40 torches in Dalaran. Sounds simple…but you have to complete the Torch Tossing and Torch Catching quests first.

For these quests, the most sensible-sounding tip I’ve found is to set your camera distance to maximum (type /console cameraDistanceMax 50 into your chat window) and point it downwards in ‘never adjust’ mode. Follow the shadow and be underneath it when it lands. This is really hard, and took me a lot of tries (plus some generous cussing). The first torch will always go straight behind you and quite a few yards, but torches 2-4 won't go far - the trick is spotting which way they go and getting there in time!

If you're stuck on this, I'd recommend Rades' awesome guide to catching torches!

So once you've done the quests you’re ready to go and possibly a little fed up. Don't despair! The achievement itself is a lot easier. I used the following strategy for this achievement:
Find a minimal-lag spot in Dalaran. Point the camera straight down, zoomed out. Bind the torches to a hotkey and target the ground under your feet. You should be able to alternate hotkey-click-hotkey-click, catching each torch as it lands.
UPDATE: Use the Purple Parlor! I never got below 11 torches out of 20 in my bags, so try everything with 10 first. This is down to lag, ultimately. I found that consciously alternating key-click-key-click made the process too slow. In the end, I just hit hotkey and clicked at the same time, as fast as possible! So try that first, ok? Because you don't want the air at your desk to be as blue as mine was before I thought of doing that...
They reappear in your bags when caught so many report doing this with as few as 10 torches and I think that would be possible. You earn 5 by doing the Torch Catching quest and stacks of 5 torches can be bought for 5 Burning Blossoms. There is also a chance for 5-15 Burning Blossoms to drop from the Satchel of Chilled Goods. Finally, you can buy them on the AH as they don’t become soulbound. Let me know how many you needed to do it!


Well, that's it. Hopefully you found something helpful in here if you were working towards any of this meta. As always, corrections/suggestions/general comments are welcome and will be edited in as soon as I can!

Good luck!
Ara

June 05, 2012

Weeks 19 - 21: Mogging Heirlooms and Hellfire Peninsula (again)

Three weeks since the last update, huh? You'd think I was slacking or something but that isn't it at all. I've been...uh...saving the world. Yep. You wouldn't believe what nearly happened and how many marshmallows I had to eat to prevent it.

Quick update:
  • Wildlight is now 61
  • Enchanting is at 375
  • Engineering is at 265
  • Inscription is at 201


Wildlight has been getting a lot of time recently as I've been running dungeons with my boyfriend's alt which makes it less tiresome. Shadow is still a fun spec for boss fights but I'm getting pretty bored of Mind Flay followed by more Mind Flay. I have noticed that I'm getting to 3 orbs quicker now so it might be looking up, but I'm still wishing for an AoE attack (and to be honest, slightly concerned that I have might have one but not know about it because it seems like such a massive hole in my toolkit?)

About mid-50s I took Discipline as my second spec and have healed a few dungeons! It's pretty good fun - dropping a shield with a heal attached is a big improvement, and Divine Aegis is great - so I'll try to heal some dungeons every few levels and slowly cement my basic Disc knowledge ready for hitting 85. I made the mistake of never playing as a Resto shaman on Shiden and now I'm too chicken to heal on her without a full guild group :( but that's for another day.

The best thing about levelling my priest was picking up some really nice quest rewards and having a sudden inspiration to mog my entire outfit around them. Sure, it's just what I had in the bank so it's not perfect, but it's making me happy to log on and level her now she's wearing a pretty outfit!


If you're interested, the visible pieces:
Head - Vishas' Hood
Shoulders - Karna's Poncho
Chest - Xakxak's Lab Frock
Hands - Frostweave Gloves
Waist - Dawnspire Cord
Feet - you can't see them on Draenei but you might have to experiment on other races to find a match.

On the professions side of things I finally made the effort to level them a bit. Enchanting is now at the Infinite Dust stage so I'll be collecting materials whilst I'm in the 60-70 bracket before I buy anything extra. I have a fair amount stashed away so hopefully it won't cost me too much! Engineering is on the back burner until I can be bothered to go and mine up lots of Thorium on my gathering alt and Inscription is likewise in need of some herbs. If only I wasn't so lazy! The Darkmoon Faire is on this week though so I've grabbed 5 points in all three professions and saved myself another chunk of materials, so it could be worse.

That's about it for now! I have a few days off this week and I'm hoping to powerlevel Wildlight into Northrend at the very least (dungeons until 62 because I refuse to quest through Hellfire Peninsula again), so we'll see how that goes.

If you have a pre-Mists list, how is it going? Have you met some/all of your goals yet? I'd love to know :)