30 Days (April) – Favourite Battleground

Property of Sirzi, deviantart

There is no BG in the game that I enjoy more than Warsong Gulch.  At it’s very core, it’s the most simplistic of games: Capture The Flag.  Of course, depending on the group you have (and the group you face) it’s not nearly that simple.  In a random collection of people, at least one or two are going to have their own ideas.  But if you can work as a team, life might not be easy in Warsong but it certainly becomes a little less difficult.

I need to add that it isn’t just the battleground I like.  I specifically like the level 15 entry bracket.  Heirlooms have certainly changed the landscape of WSG at that level, but let’s presume you’re in a group where either everyone has them or no one does.  Either way, the sides are considered to be evenly matched, relatively speaking.  At this level, you’re lucky if you have a full action bar.  Classes have the absolute basic abilities and that means you have to rely much more on skill (unlike higher levels where gear and abilities play a much more prominent role).  So that’s the full reason why I like Warsong Gulch, is that level bracket as well.

The Amateur’s Soundtrack: Warsong Gulch

Property of WoWInsider

Unlike my previous soundtrack, which was inspired by the zone and its denizens, there’s no “inspiration” in this playlist.  Well, I shouldn’t say that.  You see, over time and many trips to Warsong Gulch (despite the agony that it can be, it’s still my favourite battleground) I have found myself refining a list of go to songs.  It wasn’t intentional, but I feel like I get my “BG mojo” going with these:

1. Stan Bush – The Touch (3:52)
When the countdown to the gates opening begins, I fire this track up.  Sure, it’s one of those tracks that fits the idea of fighting, but in the annals of great musical compositions, it won’t win any major debates.  A good portion of my love for the song does come from the real Transformers movie, and one of those “emotion-invoking moments” from my youth.  I guess it’s just stuck with me over time and transitioned to Warsong.

2. Journey – Wheel In The Sky (4:15)
Separate Ways could have easily made this list as well, as I’m an admitted fan of Journey (though mostly just their Greatest Hits stuff). The strong intro in the same tone as Stan Bush is what drives this one home. I find it to be a great track for the inspiration to make a run at the flag.

3. Heart – Magic Man (2:34)
Ann and Nancy Wilson make the list because, again, I like their music. I probably wouldn’t have included them if not for this fitting track. When it comes to Warsong Gulch, either I am the Magic Man on Elcombe, or I’m trying to kill any Magic Man I see (though in the latter case it’s usually the healer I’ve focused on).

4. Iron Maiden – Run To The Hills (3:50)
For the most part, the lyrics alone are pretty applicable…especially when people start grave camping.  I’ve said all along, not my style of play.  Doesn’t mean I’m blind to the fact Warsong Gulch involves nothing but going uphill or downhill for the entire fight.  Plus, it’s Maiden.  To me they’re the epitome of fantasy and warfare.  Still disappointed I don’t know anyone who wants to see them here this summer.  Anyway, back to the list…

5. Metallica – Wherever I May Roam (6:33)
I considered putting “One” on here, as it’s one of my favourite songs of all time (and there’s actually a recording of me singing it on a cassette in my attic somewhere…).  Unfortunately, it doesn’t fit with the rest of what I’ve compiled and it actually doesn’t fit the mood that is Warsong.    WIMR, on the other hand, definitely fits the battleground anthem criteria.  Again, nearly every track so far has a strong opening that gets the juices pumping.  This one’s no different.  It keeps the tempo as you keep hopping around the gulch, racking up the honor kills as you defend the flag or regain it from the opposing faction.  Or, you know, it just sums up that fool that runs into the middle of the battlefield over and over again.

6. The Black Mages – Other World (3:13)
If you’ve played Final Fantasy X (and if you haven’t, I do recommend it), you remember this track. It was the backdrop for some sports combat, and it fits just as well playing behind your screen as you cast your spells and swing your axe at the opposing faction.  Sometimes I’ll spin from this into some Rammstein, but not always.

7. Adema – Immortal (4:06)
Let’s face it, you can’t actually “die” in a battleground. You basically get knocked out and have to come back from the hospital.  In the mechanics of an MMO, let alone a battleground, it simply doesn’t have a place. So in some ways, our characters are immortal.  Add in a seriously adrenaline building song and you’ve got a recipe for awesome.  Oh, and if it sounds familiar to you it was the theme song for Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance.

8. Fozzy – To Kill A Stranger (4:01)
“The battle is won, but will it ever end?” That sums it up, doesn’t it?  This is another song clearly written with war in mind, so why wouldn’t I include it.  Fozzy is one of those bands you either know or you don’t.  Same with their lead singer.  I’m just glad I got the chance to hear this song, as it’s a personal favourite and certainly has its place in this playlist.

I find this list is usually good for about two Warsong battles.  Sometimes more, and sometimes less.  It all depends on the quality of the two player groups.  Either way, these are perfect for whoever I decide to take in on behalf of the Horde, or the Alliance.  If nothing else, the solid music keeps my sanity when I end up in one of “those” groups.  Hope you enjoy it as well.

To Arms: A Chronology

Just to shake it up this morning, I decided to do a pair of Battlegrounds and journal my tribulations. Keep in mind I’m a level 13 Rogue, with no BoA’s and only a couple of low level Enchants.  I’m by no means twinked.  Onward I go in the name of battle!

  • 0:27 Queue for Warsong Gulch
  • 0:29 Warsong Gulch begins
  • 0:29 Head for Flag
  • 0:31 grab Alliance Flag, receive solid heals on run back
  • 0:34 mates snag our Flag back and I cap.
  • 0:36 return our Flag
  • 0:38 grab Alliance Flag for attempted win
  • 0:38 dead four seconds later.  Seems they decided to defend finally.
  • 0:39 escort a flag run, but they caught up to us
  • 0:39 took on another Rogue one level higher and meaner than I
  • 0:41 got our flag back from the level 10.  I fear no lowbie!
  • 0:44 went into their tunnel…oh hey, there’s four of them.
  • 0:44 waited to rez
  • 0:45 ganked two Hunters in their flag room
  • 0:45 grabbed flag, but their Rogue got me again
  • 0:50 we cap
  • 68 Honorable Kills, 4 Deaths, 10 Killing Blows, 2 Flag Returns, 1 Flag Capture

You know, it only stands to reason that when I “document” the battleground, everything goes fine.  There was great communication, people worked as a team, and there was success 3-0.  It really goes to show that when people actually work together, bg success isn’t too hard to obtain.

  • 0:54 Queue for Warsong Gulch
  • 0:54 cringe at Warlock with 140 health at level 14.
  • 0:54 jaw drop at level 10 Priest with 800 health.
  • 0:57 get it started, sap a Paladin going for flag, then gank him
  • 0:59 decide to go for Flag
  • 0:01 die after running past four other teammates…none of which though to turn around and run beside me.
  • 0:03 Kill Rogue plaguing our casters
  • 0:05 Go for Flag
  • 0:06 die with Flag in our tunnel >_<…yet again, not an ally in sight…passed plenty
  • 0:07 died again
  • 0:07 ganked near graveyard
  • 0:09 decide to go 1 on 1 with level 14 Rogue…oh he has nice gear.  I inspect this while dead
  • 0:10 Others are going for flag, decide to farm honor with a couple teammates
  • 0:13 cap 3-0
  • 81 Honorable Kills, 5 Deaths, 5 Killing Blows

This battleground, while just as successful, was far more frustrating as a flag carrier. Both times I got the flag I passed teammates who just kept right on going.  Dying in our tunnel was the more annoying of the two, as any help likely would’ve resulted in a capture.  Fortunately we had a couple people drop group and the new ones that came in decided communication is a good thing and they worked together to get our final two captures.

Plague Infected Thoughts

First off, this pic is long overdue…

The picture was taken on the 8th, when us five officers were finally all on at the same time.  I had given those bad boys to each of them as a Christmas/Winter Veil present.  Each one of them deserved it too, just for being their awesome selves.  ‘Course, I think I literally had to say that to each of them after they opened them (none were on to open at the same time, so I sent them via mail).

Now, begging your pardon, but I find the plague of the New Year never vacated my body, but in fact has come back for an uninvited stay.  Lucky me.  With that in mind, I’ll limit today’s post to some random thoughts as I sip the nectar that is Neocitrin.

  • We have another member of the 2012 Challenge, as Reluctant Raider signed up over the weekend.  The more the merrier I say.
  • After all, it proves I’m not insane (or at least, not alone).
  •  Every once in a while, I actually consider selling some of the gold I’ve acquired in the game.  If the price was better, I don’t know…
  • I have these considerations usually about the time I need money, oddly enough.
  • I’m afraid of getting banned.
  • This would be one of those slow periods in levelling.  I’ll make up for it, I’m sure.  I just can’t focus with the plague.
  • Too much Mog, not enough toons.
  • Seriously, I get ridiculous ideas and need to sort of mentally store them (and the gear somewhere) until I decide I want to swap my gear.  Problem is, I like what a number of toons have and the other can’t get the damn belt from Black Knight!!! (…and breathe)
  • For the life of me I can’t put together an outfit I’m really happy with for my Mage.  Might be because he’s 65, I don’t honestly know.
  • Why do people go to a battleground to farm honor and then bitch that the rest of the team fails at winning?
  • How did both my wife and I do Ulduar two weeks apart, her with more people and me in hours less time?
  • Liouxpold swears at me every time I log on and have to ride my land mount around Hyjal.
  • I tell him get a belt, I’ll get him a Hippogryph.
  • We swear at each other some more.
  • Why is it any range can go over any range weapon, but I can’t replace my Rogue’s stein with a sword?
  • Legendaries should not be used for mogging, or able to be mogged.  I said it, I stand by it, and I’m proud of it.  Go Blizz on that one.
  • ChinPokeWoW seems to be growing in popularity as some details came out.  Honestly, it doesn’t do anything for me except at this stage I’m not planning to store much in the way of non-combat pets going into the expansion.  Sounds like you can level `em and sell them.
  • That’ll screw with the auction house for a while.
  • Are all the auctioneers gone to Star Wars?
  • Seriously, where’d they go???
  • When I schedule guild events, I need to remember to set the time.  There’s a reason people don’t sign up for midnight…or show up for 7:30 as such.  My bad, ride your chopper…nothing to see here.
  • Why do blogs that interest me go quiet almost as soon as I add them to my blog roll?  Seems one out of five is a keeper.
  • If you’re one of the five, it’s honestly because you’re awesome.
  • Heroics are fun when you have laid back folk and people willing to learn and follow direction.
  • Heroics suck when you lack any of the above.
  • When are my BoA’s going to be just that?  I mean, we’ve moved from BoFoSoA’s, which literally got the F out.  Get rid of the S.
  • I was always told the F word and S word were bad.  Now I know why.
  • I should level my Death Knight three levels just so I can level his blacksmithing to 525.  Again, focus is an issue.
  • Speaking of focus, *cough* *hack* *die*…there goes mine.

Twenty Days of World of Warcraft Day Fifteen: Battlegrounds

Favourite Battleground, And Why?

Honestly, I really don’t PvP.  I had hoped with Cataclysm to roll a Twink Forsaken Hunter, but I’ve not had time for the things I’m already doing in-game, so why add to the list?  Still, I’ve dabbled enough to know there’s a few I like.

Wintergrasp, despite us Alliance folk being horrible on Runetotem, was always fun for me.  Dying was inevitable, but I think I enjoyed it because those moments we succeeded were exhilarating.  Of course, it took a turn for the worse when you could fly over the zone without dismounting.  Quite often you’d find ranged dps sitting on the Rooftops of various walls even before things began. 

Warsong Gulch and its capture the flag concept is good enough for me.  I usually end up guarding the flag because unlike many I’ve played with, I’ll not get fed up and wander off.  Although, one time my Holy Priest butt grabbed the flag because nothing else was working.  I actually made it back to our entrance before I got ganked horribly. 

Above all, though, I think I enjoy Arathi Basin the most.  I like the layout of the map, and the premise.  This one’s slightly harder to honor kill so I find the opposing faction doesn’t tend to waste your time as much, and the resources concept is a sound one for my tastes.

Why, Why, Why? (and other patch notes)

As we all know, Patch Notes are subject to a little thing called fruition. That is to say, don’t count on it until you’ve downloaded it and seen said note firsthand. Having said that, I was taking a peak at the current notes (as of June 18th) and quite a few things caught my attention.

In no particular order:

-Druid skins. These are LONG overdue. Bear and cat forms now vary based on your hair colour. Simple enough concept for me. My only beef might be that the Night Elf Cats look like pets of The Bangles.

-Mounts. I discussed the mount situation in my previous post so nothing really to repeat here, except that cast time on ground mounts was cut in half.

-Tauren can now change skins in the Barber Shop. Good. Quite frankly, there’s not that many to start with, so hopefully this adds some variation.

-XP in BG’s. Yes, that’s correct. Twinks can get a junkshot if they aren’t paying attention. Nice thing is, you can turn off XP for 10g. The key here is “turn off XP.” Not just battleground experience. This turns off ALL experience. You bg and forget, you won’t be levelling any time soon. You can turn it back on for another 10g. A nice little money tugger that appeases both sides of the fence I think.

-Prayer of Healing for Priests sees the percentage of spell power this spell gains in healing (per target) has been reduced from 80.7% to 52.6%. As a Holy Priest, that one hurts.

-Rogues may use one handed Axes. For the love of all that’s right, why? Throwing axes were fine, but this just doesn’t make sense from any standpoint. Are classes not using Axes enough that it warrants granting Rogues the chance? For an Orc it makes sense, but that falls under the same line as let’s let Priests use guns so the Dwarves can benefit. Included in the note are the words “after quiet contemplation,” leading me to hope it’s a crock.

-Quest creatures and objects will now show on the player’s world map. Anyone else feel like you just hopped on the short boat to Stormwind? WoW has already been partially labelled as a hand holding game. This does nothing to defeat that notion. If there are people who need this kind of help on a regular basis, there are addons for it. In fact, there’s addons for many things to make the game easier. For those that still want a challenge, most of this stuff should be optional rather than forced.

There’s a tonne more notes, such as Death Knight trees resetting again because of class changes (nerf bat maybe?), Profession based bonuses being improved for Herbalism and Mining, and of course the expansion to the Argent Tournament. Oh, and Emblems. But please, look that one up yourself because I’m still a bit confused on it.