Oh God, Hellfire Flashbacks

There’s Fireflint, off helping Kul Tirans as he levels up. He took some time to partake in a hunting party, and moments later I was literally having flashbacks to Hellfire Penninsula and the characters I took through there…probably Tum the most. Back then, that early entry into Outland, it was quest away and kill boars. You had to, because the bastards just kept showing up. Sometimes you’d get real lucky and end up with a few of them at once. All the healing in the world couldn’t save me. And it only got worse because Illidan forbid you were on a quest for a drop item (or multiples), because half the time the stuff wouldn’t drop. This place? SAME DAMN THING. Six expansions later and I have to suffer like this again? Is this the thanks I get for coming back? Ugh. Thank Illidan Fireflint has some durability and damage output otherwise I’d have probably lost my mind. Suffice to say I doubt any of the other Alliance toons will be visiting these yahoos. For shame Blizzard, for shame.

Oh The Questing Of Old


Ah the questing of the good old days. Well, ok, not entirely. If you’re playing in Wrath or older, that means you’re questing in Vanilla. And if you’re playing Classic WoW then of course you’re doing it also. Some of the quests are enjoyable (as I eluded to before and will bring up again later), and let’s face it a number of them are simply “Kill X of Y.” And then there’s other quests. Like class quests for example.

Now yes, I will get out of the way right now you are under no obligation to do any quest in particular (unless the loot entices you), I feel a desire to complete the class ones just to see the stories through and feel like I’m doing my characters a proper service. That said, it doesn’t mean they’re easy. Take this quest for example. At level 12 you receive the quest which will lead you to a great 2H Mace: Redemption.

Obviously good things are worth putting in the effort. But the quest for this lovely item starts outside the gates of Ironforge (as a dwarf). Subsequently you’re going to head off to find four items. No biggie. Except as you can see in the picture, there’s a bit more involved than that. Four stops: Thelsamar, Deadmines, Shadowfang Keep, and Blackfathom Deeps. As Alliance, you’re riding from Arathi Basin or possibly Southshore depending on how far north you’ve rode. You also have three instances to get into.

While it’s nice getting the quest at 12, you’re not completing it until you’re in your 20’s or higher. Me, I didn’t run and dungeons at level and as such didn’t complete it until about 40. Nice thing is, the mace is still solid at that level. Unless you’re a Prot Pally like yours truly.

Still, it’s not about the reward in this case. I did enjoy the mild story and the idea of someone building a weapon specifically for me (even if I couldn’t use it). But I forgot about the quests of old and the traveling involved. Some are worth doing, and others (an elf in Darnassus wanted me to go to the Hinterlands) can be passed on. And yet, I find I like it more than questing the original zones post-Wrath. Doing the traveling and completing the quests feels appropriate to your level, rather than going into a zone and jumping on a storyline that you out-level before it culminates.

Classic Quests: The Missing Diplomat

There are a lot of quests of varying satisfaction in Classic WoW. One in particular many players manage to bypass. The quest has two requirements: Alliance and level 28. To start The Missing Diplomat, you need to pop in to the Stormwind Cathedral and talk to a young boy named Thomas. He tells you there is a bishop in Stormwind Keep that you should speak to. Over the course of the next dozen or so quests, you are going to follow the trail of some shady Defias activity and go from Stormwind to Duskwood and Wetlands to Dustwallow Marsh, where Jaina and company are thankful for your assistance.

Along the way it doesn’t take long to find out who has gone missing and it adds to the story that much more. It’s a quest chain that doesn’t require a lot of “kill x to get y.” A great deal of the quest chain involves talking to various people or cracking down on a few individuals. In the end you get a decent ring depending on your class and a great deal of xp along the way.

But none of it happens if you don’t come upon the start of the quest in Stormwind Cathedral. There’s a good chance the non-human races don’t come across it if they level in their race’s region. To say nothing of Horde characters. Honestly, I would definitely recommend rolling an Alliance character to experience this quest chain and a few other quite good ones. I’ll share a few more over the next couple of weeks. And don’t worry Horde, I will get to you as well. I just have to reacquaint myself with a few of them once more.

A Familiar Time Of Year

It’s strange. Whenever I walk away from Azeroth, for however long, it’s always around this time that I return. Last time it made sense, what with the launch of Legion. Other instances, not so much. Even now. I don’t know if it’s a subconscious thought process as BlizzCon approaches…but it’s always the end of summer and into the fall. It’s as innocent as reading a blog post or catching a video on YouTube (usually lore related). Normally it’s no big deal but then this seasonal change comes along and it all changes.

To be honest, I came back to the game at the end of August when my holidays were winding down. I went two or three weeks in that window without playing and in the past that has been the reason that I stopped subbing and playing all together. Not this time. This time is different. Why? Continue reading

Blingtron’s Feeling Festive

At least, that’s what I would like to think.  Most days he basically hands you a Thermal Anvil, or less, and send you on your merry way.  Today he seems to realize it’s getting close to Winter Veil and his usual gifts won’t compare to Greatfather Winter’s offerings (assuming they actually change this year).  As such, along with his usual paltry items, Blingy decided Zarahi’s been a good Troll so far.


The quest book is for the Brawler’s Guild.  It unlocks the Blingtron 3000 card from Card Trader Ami.  The Sky-Bo, to be honest, I had never even heard of (still out of the loop in many regards).  It’s the pet version of the ever popular Sky Golem.  I’ll be interested to see what it does.  First I need to level a few other pets just to defeat my blasted menagerie…

More 6.0 Observations

A few days in and we’ve definitely got a feel for the new flavor of WoW.   Yesterday I talked about the many immediate changes that bombarded us in the first minutes we logged in, but now the details can be absorbed a bit better.

Class changes are interesting.  The only thing I had to do on Saintvache was choose two new talents.  His action bars went nearly untouched.  I could not say the same for Tumunzahar, Siori, and Liouxpold.  Perhaps it’s an Alliance thing.  Speaking of classes, many people found Burnt Glyphs in their possession now.  Rest assured that’s just for Glyphs that are no longer in the game.

I completed the Iron Horde invasion on the Horde side, and while I don’t know the details of what is to follow, I really hope it isn’t done now.  I came out of it with a title and a new pet, but incredibly underwhelmed.  That and agitated because Thrally-Sue (which I think I’ll call him far more often now) had to be the one running around on the front line.  Really?  There couldn’t be anyone else?  The guy had a whole expansion dedicated to him (Deathwing was merely supporting cast) and still we get him shoved down our throat.  Not to rant too much, because up until the later parts of Cataclysm I actually liked Thrall.  It’s just that Blizzard has overplayed him.  Getting back to the Iron Horde, it seemed pretty linear and to the point.  I’ll have to flip over and give the Alliance side a try before I really assess it but I can’t imagine it is all that different.

One no longer has to spend so much time in Pandaria.  I logged into a toon and found it sitting at 100% XP, but hadn’t dinged yet.  There’s no way in Dire Maul I would ever let that happen.  The OCD in me would have to ding before I logged.  Particularly because that’s less than exploratory XP.  That’s more along the lines of “you dinged because the wind changed direction.”  Now, to confirm this is the case, I played for a little while and had six bubbles in half an hour.  At 88.  Hrm, this place really might not be that bad anymore.

The final nugget of “huzzah” is stacking.  Imagine my surprise when I had the bank open and decided to top up my stack of Dreamfoil and sell the rest.  Suddenly I had a stack of 28!  I began playing around with this immediately, finding eventually that stacks cap at 200 now.  Between that and the Toy Box my bags are bordering on empty (and the bag sort feature is fantastic).  But what it really excites me for is my guild banks.  For Claws, it just means having a cleaner bank.  For the auctioneer in me, it means more room to store goodies.  I mean, just look at the difference in one tab.


It wasn’t 100% good news, though.  On top of shelling out gold for some face lifts (I think I spent about 200g or so in total.  Obviously someone with more 90’s than I spent even more), I found that some gear held onto its transmogrification, while others reset.  Needless to say, many of my toons look incredibly goofy so I will have to correct that when given the chance to.

I’m sure many people knew about these changes already, from playing the PTR or reading about it.  For me, I have been incredibly removed from these details of the game as I’ve been merely puttering in it for the past few months.  I vaguely kept tabs on what’s going on and really didn’t read the changes ahead of time (of course I knew about character models).  Thus, it’s all a surprise.  It feels like a good surprise, and I have a feeling I’m not the only returning player to think so.

Waking Up To 6.0

Patch 6.0 is now live and with it came many changes, but none more than the vast amount of visual ones.  Almost everyone I spoke to yesterday was headed straight for the Barber Shop to see what they had to work with.  Many weren’t keen on what they saw when they logged in, while others didn’t mind the initial look when things went live around 1:30 EST.  Personally, Tum was far more angry than I wanted.  To be honest, almost all of the dwarves are surly/angry looking.  Not that it doesn’t fit the race, because it most certainly does.  It’s just that it wouldn’t hurt to have one lighthearted option.  As you can see by this image, I did the best I could with what I had.

New Tum
Initial one on the left, new on the right.

I had to change Saintvache as well, as logging on to him I was blinded by an albino.  I just wish we had more hair options for the Tauren.  As for the rest of the team, I’ll check them in due time.

It wasn’t just character models that changed.  From what I saw last night and this morning, nothing sparkles anymore.  No quest items, no nodes. Nothing!  Instead, you’ll get a faint outline that gets stronger once you mouse over it.  Even characters gain an outline now (green for friendly, red for not) when targeted, though I’m sure there’s an option to turn it off.  Still, at a glance it took me a second to complete a couple of quests because I was looking for the shiny.

Action bars have obviously changed, with some spells removed and others simply changed.  But speaking of spells, they even look better visually.  The animations are fantastic, though I’ve only seen Paladin, Mage, and Warlock.  Once again, I’ll get to them in due time…or simply see them amidst my travels.

This isn’t even documenting some of the bigger changes that came with the patch either.  Things like the new level UBRS, the Iron Horde invasion (which I’ve started Horde side…so far so good), Garrisons, Premade Groups in the Dungeon Finder, all the class changes, etc.

With the game seeing an increase of over half a million players, this patch is well timed.  Many of the changes brought the game up to relatively modern standards and introduced a lot of things the players have been yearning for, for quite some time.  Will it translate to more than 7.4 million players and sustain them for a while this time?  Hard to say, but you can’t say the new expansion isn’t setting up to take a big swing at it.