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Happy Expansionmas!

It has been a long time since I last updated this blog. I got a new job three months ago that has zapped all my time and energy. I traded the quiet part-time hours of the library for the stress of a full time job working with foster youth, so my WoW time took a nose dive. But with Warlords launching and new things to see and do I have made the extra effort to return! A month or two off of WoW (though unintentional) was just what I needed.

I don’t have a spectacular post lined up though. Instead I have some random thoughts in no particular order:

I am stuck at work today instead of enjoying the expansion. Responsible adult life sucks ass. I want to be home playing Warlords. Instead I am sitting at my cubicle bored and annoyed. Ef this noise.

I almost stayed up to play at the midnight launch but then thought better of it. I have to function at work at least a little bit. This appears to have been a sound choice because I hear a lot of people had trouble with server crashes and errors and lag. So not my cup of tea.

I have a headache. Can’t decide if this means I need more coffee or less.

Garrisons look awesome. I have mostly avoided any information on them, primarily because I stopped playing WoW and therefore stopped reading about it. I should read a guide or something before I dive head first into construction.

I want to collect all the pets. RIGHT NOW.

I have a feeling that I am gonna get left behind and left out because I can’t be online playing all day long.

The new toy box is awesome and appeals to my insane collecting addiction.

The new male night elf model is…not…what I wanted it to be. He runs fruity. Not sure what to think.

Maybe by the time I get home the kinks will be worked out, the servers will be stable, and I can play in peace.

I need Argi. So bad.

At level 100 I am going back and stomping Garrosh’s head until it resembles a pulverized watermelon.

I actually like the idea of a legendary ring.

I should probably get back to work. Enjoy the expansion!

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Iron Man Challenge: Un’Goro Crater Edition

Welcome back to my Iron Man Challenge series, where I blather randomly about the crap I do to survive my way to level 90 with no gear, no talents, and no deaths. I’ve been busy lately and that has meant little time to chug my way to 90, but I’m back this week with some screenshots of my exploits in Un’Goro Crater! Sit back, relax, and let’s get going.

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Un’Goro is an iconic zone to me. I spent a lot of time here back when I first started playing, though I don’t remember anymore why that was. My little level 50-ish warlock ran around here doing Elune only knows what, dying repeatedly to the devilsaurs, harassing random Alliance folk, killing dinosaurs…it was a fun zone, and it still is.

Some things never change, like the silithid incursion. We slaughtered a bunch of icky bugs.

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We climbed insurmountable volcanic peaks to poke fire elementals in the face and take temperature readings of things that should have melted our skin right the hell off. Of course that’s a goblin quest; who else needs to take volcanic temperature readings for no apparent reason?

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We bravely ran away from anything resembling a gigantic devilsaur on a rampage.

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That is, until we met this guy:

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Maximillian of Northshire may not be the brightest bulb ever lit, but he’s got charisma. He convinced us, against our better judgement, to join him in his crusade to rid the world (or Un’Goro, really) of “dragons” and rescue a few fair “maidens” in distress. So they weren’t really dragons, and the damsels in distress were neither damsels nor in distress, but whatever.

Pro tip: Maximillian’s entire quest chain is amusing and kind of fun, and worth doing at least once so you know what the fool is yelling about all over the zone. However, the final stage of the quest chain, where you ride on the back of Max’s steed and throw rocks at the Devilsaur Queen, appears to be either bugged or simply very poorly put together. It takes forever, and that is not an exaggeration. If you are doing the Iron Man Challenge and have no great burning desire to finish the chain, then I would recommend skipping the final quest. I was able to finish it only after about 15 minutes or so of throwing rocks and running in a big circle, but the devilsaur bites hard and if you’re squeamish about risking your life, then don’t do it. Be safe, not sorry!

Thankfully, much of the zone was green to us as we worked our way towards level 60. We stomped on some flowers, just for fun.

They were EVIL flowers, okay?

They were EVIL flowers, okay?

And we hiked into the wilds beyond the crater to discover some ancient skeletal remains of what must have been the biggest damn dragon Max has ever not seen.

Seriously, do not tell Max about this.

Seriously, do not tell Max about this.

At one point we found ourselves embroiled in some sort of titan-lady’s questing hullabaloo, and took the time to snap a few pics of things people don’t see unless they randomly point their camera up. No one looks up. I think it was WoW Insider that did an article on the epic ceilings of WoW, and it’s worth a read if you can find it.

If you turn your camera to the ceiling in this little alcove in Un’Goro, you’ll find painted murals of what appear to be standard Christian angels or cherubim. Kinda odd in a world that doesn’t have Christianity. What are they? Some sort of Titan symbolism? They appear on the ceilings of the Halls of Stone, too. Look up some time.

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It was a rather peaceful place to quest, if you don’t count Max’s constant bellowing about Dragons and his beloved Doloria (who probably left him long ago for a quieter, less insane lover). And nothing beats massive trees and lush foliage for screen shots!

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Trees!

Have another. On me.

MOAR TREES!

MOAR TREES!

Add a few sweeping vistas with moody, emo fog…

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And you pretty much have the majority of the screenshots I took. It was a fun run, but by the time I was done I was really ready for a change of scenery.

We do have one thing to celebrate, though.

Ding!

Ding!

Sixty levels without a single death. Onward to Silithus!

Iron Man Challenge: Feralas Edition

Did you think I had forgotten about my Iron Man progression? Well, I did. But I remembered, so here’s the next post!

 

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After tromping around in a fetid swamp for what felt like forever, the lush, open forests of Feralas seemed like a welcomed vacation, all things considered. There was no grand battle against the Horde, no swarm of orcs to defeat, and no Alliance generals barking orders. It was quiet. Mostly.

Our first quest lead us like a breadcrumb trail off to the Feathermoon Stronghold on the western shores of the zone. Years ago before Deathwing threw a temper tantrum, the Stronghold was located on an island out in the bay. The elves lost control of that island to the naga, and had to rebuild.

Before...

Before…

After!

After!

The quests really haven’t changed that much since the Cataclysm, much like the zone its self. There’s still the usual “kill yetis, kill ogres, kill gnolls” quest progression, along with a bevy of sea giants that like to fart bubbles and pop them for their own amusement.

This time, though, the zone has a few new arrivals. Satyrs made a brief appearance shortly before they ran away from a volley of arrows flung by an archer in a very odd mish-mash of gear…

This is a satyr...um...altar?

This is a satyr…um…altar?

The Green Dragonflight also has a more pronounced appearance here, with some hullabaloo about the Emerald Nightmare overflowing into Feralas and causing a lot of issues with local wildlife. Thanks to Iarann’s immaculate archery skills, however, a lot of the corrupted fauna has been put to rest. I loved seeing the dream portal in the northern part of the zone featured in a few quests.

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This particular plot culminated in a face-off with a very large corrupt green dragon who was suspiciously squishy for being elite. Apparently killing him has freed Feralas from the Nightmare, allowing it to heal. Yay!

 

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Also new to the zone are the ogre plot lines since Cataclysm. And if we’re going to talk about ogres, we of course have to talk about Cho’gall. He made an appearance long enough for Iarann to sink a few well-placed arrows into his eyes.

AAAGH! He's looking right at me! ...I think...

AAAGH! He’s looking right at me! …I think…

No lie, I was apprehensive about taking him down. I was promised the full support of the night elf army in Feralas, but I received approximately three eleven warriors and one elven archer. Five puny mortals plinking away at the ankles of a massive, all-powerful ogre demi-god. Thank Elune he had an Achilles heel or something, because he threw a fit at 80% health and ported away.

He left his minions behind though.

I'm not really sure what was going on here, but Cho'gall was yelling a lot.

I’m not really sure what was going on here, but Cho’gall was yelling a lot.

Feralas is a gorgeous zone. It’s dark and shady and cool and full of hippogryphs and faerie dragons. It’s easy to see why long-lost elven societies called it home.

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The ruins of these ancient civilizations are now being colonized by less-than-lovely creatures. Harpies took over the ruins in the north:

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While ogres have been squatting in various other ruined cities. Dire Maul, once the wondrous elven city of Eldre’Thalas, has been turned in to an ogre community. It probably stinks to high heaven now, but it’s still pretty.

Around every corner, a pile of ogre shit.

Around every corner, a pile of ogre shit.

However, some of these ancient cities are still populated by the Highborne…dead ones, anyway. Iarann’s misadventures lead her to the marshy ruins of a temple high atop a hill in central Feralas where she was duped into helping the spectre of a malicious long-dead demon corrupt the poor elven spirits further. Oops. After killing ghosts and digging through the mud, Iarann was told to “take this thing to the dead tree at the northern edge of the ruins”. All of the trees were dead. It took me several minutes of running around using the item before I finally found which “dead” tree I was supposed to use it on. Oy.

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I see dead people.

Our travels took us deep into the heart of an ancient, unchanged paradise. Quests and mobs were as green to us as the foliage, but I think that is probably to our advantage. Usually I leave a zone once the quests turn green regardless of if I have completed it, but I thought it best to stay not only for the story but for the easy experience. Despite being decked out in crappy level 30ish vendor trash gear, Iarann is mowing through mobs just as easily as if she were in full heirlooms.

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Our journey through Feralas came to a wrap with the slaughtering of a few dozen silithid pests. I have always been slightly put off by silithid hives. They move on their own. They pulse. They’re full of chirping, hissing, humming, buzzing insects. They have long, finger-like protrusions above ground that twitch and flex. Are they alive? Are the hives the slowly-decaying corpses of massive, ancient bugs?

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I decided I really didn’t care to find out. We killed our share of bugs but, just as we were about to high-tail it out of the hive, something pretty and blue and flappy appeared on the screen. So I tamed it. Meet our new friend Honeycomb (named, of course, after a character from My Little Pony).

I like flowers and sunshine and stabbing people in the face with my butt.

I like flowers and sunshine and stabbing people in the face with my butt.

That’s about it for the Feralas edition. With Honeycomb in tow Iarann and I headed for the next zone and the next adventure. Where will it be this time? I’m still deciding. I might trade the lush comfort of Feralas for the arid beauty of Thousand Needles, or I might find myself trekking through the putrid forests of Felwood. Find out next time! And don’t forget to stop and admire the scenery once in a while.

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