Now that we’re a couple days into Shadowlands season 4, I thought I’d talk about how the last season ended. I successfully reached my three goals – 3k m+ rating, Ahead of the Curve, and the Vicious PVP mount.
I definitely spent more time on mythic+ than anything else in Shadowlands season 3. I ended the season at 3017 rating on my shaman.
Here’s the breakdown from raider.io. As we were unlocking portals, I had timed a couple +20 fortified keys but no tyrannical, so I really thought tyrannical was going to be the harder one. Somehow I ended up with a lot more rating from tyrannical than fortified, which I didn’t realize until working on this blog post.
Not the most exciting screenshot, but this is when Shadowlands Keystone Hero: Season Three popped! Like last season two, I main’d restoration shaman. I also earned the rest of the dungeon portals this season that I didn’t get last season, and we made sure everyone in our m+ group got all the portals.
I also played holy priest a little. My goal was just 2500 rating, and I got that done without much stress!
I finished Sepulcher of the First Ones heroic on my resto shaman, although the Jailer did give me some trouble. We ended up splitting the raid team into multiple small groups after determining that the fight was easier with smaller groups. I didn’t end up getting my kill until week 19 of the season – 56 days after defeating the previous boss, Rygelon!
This is Carcinized Zerethsteed, the Ahead of the Curve mount! It’s pretty cool.
The Shimmering Aurelid mount was the reward for Glory of the Sepulcher Raider; it’s another awesome mount!
My goal in PVP was to get the Vicious War Croaker, which is the cool frog mount that you can see I earned above. I love the frog animation in which the frog shoots its tongue out to eat the glowing fly! I PVP’d on my priest in discipline.
I ended the season at Challenger II – 1691 RBG rating (also my best) with 45 games won out of 95 played. We also tried 2v2 arena a little, although I like battlegrounds significantly more. In 2s, I ended Challenger I with a rating of 1481 and best rating of 1490 with 20 wins out of 37 matches. Mooglegem and I were expecting to do much worse to be honest, so we were happy with how we did. However, you get much less credit toward the mount while doing 2s, and it caused way more stress. We mostly did RBGs, but it was nice trying 2s.
It was a good season! Now it’s time for season four, which will definitely feel a little different for PVE. I hope everyone has a great season!
Good news for some of us, and bad news for the Exarch – we killed High Exarch Turalyon in Stormwind recently! I completed the For the Horde achievement years ago, which tasks you with defeating the various city leaders. Since then, the Storming Stormwind achievement was changed from Varian to Anduin and then moved to Legacy when Executing the Exarch was added in Shadowlands.
We had to pose on the throne of course.
This wasn’t really our original plan. We only had 8 people and were in Stormwind to screw around and fight NPCs and any Alliance who wanted to stop us. None engaged us, so we decided to try Turalyon. Afterwards we went back to clear out the bank and auction house, then eventually found where all the Alliance players were – there was a raid group outside Goldshire. We saw a few people in the inn there, and then suddenly the raid group phased into existence. We had a nice battle and then hearthed home!
Five thousand Alliance have fallen before me in battle on Draenor, earning me the Defender of Draenor achievement. A monument now commemorates this, standing next to my Gladiator’s Sanctum!
Speaking of the Gladiator’s Sanctum, I finished Nemesis: Worgen Hunter this weekend and have continued to Nemesis: Draenei Destroyer. I have four more races to slaughter, counting the draenei. I also became exalted with Vol’jin’s Spear. It was a productive weekend.
Ashran was incredibly fun at the start of the expansion, but eventually people stopped PVPing, opting to do events. Luckily the group finder makes it easy to find a Nemesis group – perfect for direct PVP. I’ve been having a wonderful time in Ashran, although part of that has to do with my own circumstances. I hurt my wrist a few months ago and didn’t like prolonged computer gaming. I wish I could say it got better, but actually, I just bought a wrist brace. Regardless, I can now spend hours in Ashran again. I’m not looking forward to the rarer races, but I’m definitely looking forward to “Warlord of Draenor.”
While visiting Greenburg’s garrison, the death knight Kanora challenged me to a duel. As we scrapped and brawled across his paths and through his town hall for thirteen minutes, two things became clear. One, we should really battle in Ashran together. Two, Kanora should really fight Nahcho, who claims to be the number one DK (never mind the fact that Darkdk#1).
Warlords of Draenor sounds very cool and seems to be bringing a lot of great things. I don’t intend for this post to rehash all the news released at BlizzCon, but I still want to talk about my reaction.
I love the direction of the story; Garrosh escapes and, with the help of the Timewalker Kairoz, travels back in time to Draenor. He stops the orcs from becoming corrupted by the Burning Legion and forms the Iron Horde. He then builds his own Dark Portal connecting that Draenor to our Azeroth. I know that anything relating to time travel can be confusing to people, but I kind of like that Blizzard basically told us not to worry about it and that there wouldn’t be any time paradoxes or consequences. I like it. It’s just an excuse for us to visit Draenor and interact with all the old orcs. Of course, this gives us a lot of potential. Seeing ruthless, old-fashioned orcs should be fun, and of course, experiencing Draenor will be great.
It could also be a vehicle for some interesting character development. What if Garrosh finds his father’s not what he expected? What if Grom thinks Garrosh is a failure? It’ll be fascinating. I also think Blizzard has a chance to do something great with Thrall. Thrall never had the chance to know his parents. We know Durotan is going to side with our Horde, but what if he’s different than Thrall imagined? Even if he’s a good guy, what if he’s still ruthless? What if he thinks the Horde is too soft? In addition, some characters could stick around after the end of the expansion. For example, Durotan could come through the Dark Portal to live on Azeroth.
I’m also fascinated by the idea of circumstance shaping a person, and I hope Warlords of Draenor examines this. I’d like to see some characters act very differently than they did in the original timeline due to the changed events in their lives.
Stats and itemization
Hit was always a boring stat to me. There was no strategy or choice. You just had to get hit-capped. I’m glad to see it and its fellow not-fun stats removed. Movement speed could be a fun stat on gear as well. Plus, being able to move quickly and get back to DPSing or healing means a DPS/HPS boost.
Having gear change to match the wearer’s current spec is very interesting. It means you can use more gear but that there’s more competition. Ultimately, I think it’ll make the game much more offspec-friendly.
Reforging seemed more needless than useful. On the other hand, it is nice to be able to change from a haste build to a crit build without changing gear. I almost feel like it would work better like changing specs. When you’re out of combat, you can could change builds. Oh well. We’ll have to see what it’s like for gems and enchants to be less common as well.
Garrisons are effectively the Sunsong Ranch farm crossed with the companion mission system of TOR (or other games) with a dash of Warcraft RTS. Sounds intriguing. I liked the farm even though it felt like a grind at times, so I’m optimistic about this. Honestly, it’s more of an evolution of the idea of keeps and followers from Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. It could be pretty fun.
Updated character models
Honestly, I don’t really care about this. I don’t understand it. My character is a pretty portion of my screen. When I play D&D, my representation is, at most, a small metal figure that isn’t even using an accurate weapon half the time. However, a lot of people do care, so I’m glad Blizzard’s doing it.
Boost to 90
I completely understand how some people are bothered by this, but I’m not at all. I’ve never had two characters at the level cap. With the character boost, I’m more likely to get a second to level 100. It’d be nice to check out some other styles of play, because I’ve only ever had my priest at endgame. In addition, being able to boost to 90 combined with updated character models mean that people who haven’t played WoW before can immediately begin playing what is effectively a new, modern game. That’s great.
Collections and quest items
These might be my favorite changes. Currently, mounts and pets are in collections rather than items. In Warlords of Draenor, toys, heirlooms, and possibly tabards will be in collections as well. That’s so much bag space I’ll be regaining. In addition, quest items won’t take up bag space. Finally. I’m pretty excited. The only downside is that I lost all those toys I earned previously. Maybe Blizzard could check that I did those quests and award me the toys. Please, Blizzard?
LFR is still LFR. Flex will be called Normal. Normal will be called Heroic. Heroic will be called Mythic. LFR, Normal, and Heroic will all be flexible (1o to 25 people) and cross-realm. Mythic will not be cross-realm and will be 20 people. As a normal-mode raider currently (so a heroic-mode raider next expansion) in a guild that struggles with attendance, this is great news. We recruit so we have 15-20 people, and then we take everyone every week. Awesome! I do feel bad for current 10-man heroic guilds, but it won’t be my problem at least.
Dailies and dynamic events
Dailies will not be widely used. Great. Dynamic events like those from the Timeless Isle will exist in the world. Also great if not overdone. In addition, they talked about wanting to combine the ideas behind the Isle of Thunder and the Timeless Isle. I think Blizzard is on to something, and I like to see them iterating on the way content is delivered. A combination of these two is exactly what I want.
The map will tell you where the next story quest is, and it also indicates how many story chapters you’ve completed. This is awesome news. In Mists of Pandaria, I finished all the zones before I started raiding, and I only did a dungeon once I got to it in the story. It made for a nice, cohesive experience, but it also meant I took longer to get raid-ready. In Warlords of Draenor, I’ll skip all the non-story quests and come back to them. This should speed up the process significantly.
PVP interface updates
I don’t know how anyone could have a problem with being able to see capping progress on the map and on the flags themselves. This is a welcome change.
Warlords of Draenor
I’m pretty excited about all the aspects of the expansion. I’ll admit, things could go wrong. The quests could be boring, or the new content delivery mechanisms could be boring. I won’t know until I see the content. But I’m feeling hyped to experience it. Of course, I’d like to defeat Garrosh in normal-mode first!
Rohan thinks we should bring back talent trees with talents every level for leveling purposes. However, he proposes that at max level, you have every talent, but the talents give the abilities that a class gets while leveling currently. This would make it simply a way of choosing what you get first while leveling. It’s a great idea!
Humans are the most common GW2 race followed by norn (big humans). This makes me really sad, because some of the races are pretty interesting. I can’t believe more people don’t want to be charr or sylvari!
Questgiver PSA, Typhoon Andrew, TyphoonAndrew’s – Eye of the Storm, 10/12/12.
5.1 brings the DMF a new attraction that gives an XP and rep buff, a master pet trainer who has a chance of awarding a pet when defeated, and a new pet for 90 tickets. And I was so close to not needing tickets!
Speaking of the 5.1 patch, here are the notes on the patch. The naval fleets are coming, and with them come outdoor PVP in Krasarang Wilds. In addition, there will be solo PVE underground fighting rings in Stormwind and Orgimmar and the ability to upgrade the quality of battle pets.
Note: I wrote this in 5.0.4 before the launch of Mists of Pandaria. I’m using it now as filler!
I know none of this is going to really matter in a couple weeks, but I noticed something kind of funny with 5.0.4. I use AskMrRobot to determine what gear is best for raiding. Because I wasn’t raiding normal mode regularly, I had it set to LFR. With 5.0.4, what was valor point gear is now available for justice points, and what was conquest point gear is now available for honor points. Good raiding gear comes from raids, but good PVP gear came from conquest. Because of this, there was a bunch of new PVP gear I could purchase (because I don’t do arenas or RBGs), but nothing I needed with justice.
Then I noticed something I wasn’t really expecting on AskMrRobot. Because I now have access to good PVP gear but only do LFR, AMR was suggesting two pieces of PVP gear as the best gear for raiding. The “Ring 2” entry, Cataclysmic Gladiator’s Band of Meditation, has a red arrow indicating it’s not BiS, but the ring it wants me to use requires being exalted with the Avengers of Hyjal (and I’m not).
Anyways, this seemed pretty funny to me. Regardless, all this gear will be old soon.
I recently asked a question in the Queue at WoW Insider that got answered on Wednesday, 9/12. The answer from Alex Ziebart pretty much matched what I was thinking and the answers I got from other WoW Insider readers.
I want to run BGs when I first hit 90 (and probably while leveling a bit too, I suppose). Will I be using my current PVP gear (what was conquest gear before the patch) when I first 90, or will I be using quest rewards?
You’ll probably want to use the level 90 quest rewards. The iLevel on the new items is a big enough jump over level 85 gear that it’s worth it. Plus all players have built-in damage reduction now, so you won’t instantly die repeatedly in the level 90 stuff.
The reason why I asked was because I was wondering if I should bother enchanting or gemming my newly acquired PVP gear. No, I don’t think I will. I’d rather auction off my remaining mats and get new gear as I quest to 90. I’ll be at a very slight disadvantage at first I suppose, but I’d rather have the gold.
There have been other bloggers talking about their Cataclysm bucket lists lately, and I didn’t think I had anything I really needed to get done before Pandaria hits. However, I recently realized I was wrong.
I’ve always thought of Wintergrasp and Tol Barad basically as battlegrounds. I do them for PVP. However, the fact that Wintergrasp is so dead shows that most people are likely doing them for the gear you can get. That means Tol Barad will likely die when Pandaria releases. Embarrassingly, I don’t have Tol Barad Veteran yet. I’m actually only 13/25. I need to step it up!
To a lesser extent, I need to work on Loremaster. I don’t expect to finish it, but it’ll be easier now than later. When Blizzard’s new-fangled realm merging in under-populated zones, I suspect I’ll have people around me now in the low level zones. On the one hand, I like the idea the world feeling more alive. On the other hand, I don’t want to have compete for quest objectives.
Most likely, I’ll finish TB off and forget to work on Loremaster at all.
On May 22, Olivia Grace wrote a piece called “Keys to PvP: Keybinding, movement and clicking” for WoW Insider. It was a good article and discussed what you’d expect – using the mouse for movement, using keybinds rather than clicking on skills, and setting up keybinds.
I use both the keyboard and the mouse for movement depending on the situation. I don’t click any of my skills. In fact, I don’t display my skill bars. I have bars that onto which I throw random items, and I have a non-clickable bar onto which I put certain long-CD skills just to use to track when they’re ready. They can’t be clicked. My healing skills are all performed the Clique on Grid. For those who don’t know, that means that various clicks I perform on my raid frames perform different heals. Right-click on someone to cast Penance on them for example. For this reason, I’ll use the keyboard to move if I’m using the mouse with Grid. I posted the following comment on the article:
As a healer, I find that I do movement with WASD and the mouse, depending on the situation. I’m healing on unit frames. Is that clicking? I actually have no buttons on screen at all, but all healing spells are bound to mouse buttons for Clique.
But the main topic I’m here to address is healing. CaylynnRunner, berna.bleeker, adyuaa, andPeterAnagirou all talked about the trials of PvP healing as users of Healbot, VuhDo, Clique and the like, and that’s what I plan to talk about today.
I wasn’t expecting that! I didn’t really write this article to discuss keybinds or movement. I was actually just excited about being mentioned on the site! (Of course, I’ve also been published on WoW Insider, so you’d think I wouldn’t be that excited.) I’m just impressed that she took the time to answer.
I will say, however, that I wasn’t exactly disagreeing there. I was just mentioning why I used the keyboard for movement sometimes. In her follow-up, Grace discussed ways to heal without using the mouse. First, she discussed targeting players with keys, say party members 1-5 with the numbers 1-5, and then simply pressing the button bound to your heal. Another interesting method she discussed, about which I had never though, was using different modifiers to select target. Say the ‘1’ button casts Penance. Control+1 might Penance party member 1, alt+1 would Penance party member 2, shift+1 would cast on the next, etc. It’s a fantastic idea! However, both these ideas would only work in arena. I don’t really enjoy arena.
What about battlegrounds? She heals on her raid frames when she’s being left alone just like I do. There’s one catch; when she heals someone by clicking on her raid frames, it selects them. Her healing spells are also bound to keyboard shortcuts. When she’s under attack, she can move with the mouse and use keybindings to continue healing the person she last had selected. That’s a pretty nice idea. The only problem I still see is that I do a lot of offensive casting in battlegrounds as well. I like to keep an enemy selected so I can cast offensive spells on them while casting healing spells using Grid.
While I’m used to my way, I may have to try her way though if I have the time to try learning it! Again, I just want to repeat what really excited me. Grace was directly responding to previous comments in her new post. Fantastic :)
I love PvP. I love battlegrounds. I love watching Blizzcon’s arena tournaments! All that being said, I’m never really enthusiastic about entering the arena myself. I get overly nervous, and I realize what I should be doing a half-second too late!
Anyway, Devee’s always asking me to arena with him for Conquest points, and after a few rounds, I’m usually a shaky wreck. Last Wednesday, however, I found myself with a spare hour (too short for a heroic or dailies), so I offered to play in the arenas.
This week was really amazing! We had great communication, and I was able to keep calm (most of the time). I felt like I had much more control when my emotions were in check, and it really shows! We were able to get all our conquest points for 2v2 arena! Yay!