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November 2008

October 2008

Macros Are Your Friends for Showing off Pets and Mounts

Now that I can carry around all my pets and mounts all the time, I needed to find a better way to summon them than stopping to scroll through 5 pages of them every team I wanted to have one out. I ended up using macros and posting them to my right hand bar. Here are the ones I am using:

Pets

/run CallCompanion("CRITTER", random(GetNumCompanions("CRITTER")))

Mounts

/run CallCompanion("MOUNT", random(GetNumCompanions("MOUNT")))

It's nice to use macros for things more fun than tossing tainted cores at raid members or pleading to have someone click the spine off me so I can continue healing kthxbai.


Spectral Gryphon Rides

It's 8:30, a good half hour past when our servers were planned to be back up, so instead of checking my bank alt before heading out for the day, I am sharing a screenshot from this past week.

While the zombie plague spread through the cities, I stayed where it was safe -- the Eastern Plagues, homebase for the Argent Dawn. Thanks to some Strat 2-mans, plus farming and the occasional scourge necropolis popping up, I ground out my exalted level with Argent Dawn over the course of a week.

One night, while out in Plaguewood farming, I was asked to help with a headless horseman group. Since Alliance had control of the towers, I was able to visit the nearby ghostly gryphon master, and hop on this spectral gryphon, taking me to Eastwall Tower, and speeding up my trip. It's my favorite way to travel out there...


Minor Glyphs: a Checklist

As previously noted, I swapped one of my characters over to inscription and quickly leveled her up to the pre-Expansion maximum. I have been dutifully conducting my inscription research every morning, learning a new minor glyph each day. After about a week, I started finding it hard to keep track of all the ones I have learned-- and of which ones I have equipped on my various characters.

Thus, I made myself a table of the available minor inscriptions, with spaces to check off which ones I have learned plus which ones I've equipped. I've turned that into a PDF. You can also view it as HTML below, behind the cut. Enjoy!

Continue reading "Minor Glyphs: a Checklist" »


Zombies Ate my Post

I blame my lack of updating on the fact that Zombies ate my bank alt. And my flight master. And before that guildies made me and my many alts do daily headless horseman runs. We will return to regularly scheduled updates soon.


363 Inscription in a Day (but not on Patch Day)

As soon as I decided which character was going to level inscription, I started old-world herb farming. It's fairly boring to run around in the lowbie areas collecting herbs, so I did that in small spurts, starting about a month prior to the patch. I made a list with each herb arranged by tier of use for inscription, and tallied my herbs, and kept herbing until I met the BETA users consensus on about how many herbs it will take to level. Of course, those numbers changed a good 3 times from my initial tally, so there were a few revisits to the Hinterlands, both Plagues and STV. My ultimate herb cache was based on the numbers from Banana Shoulders' indispensable inscription leveling guide.

The last pre-patch preparation I made was to go to WoWhead and read about just what all the major inscriptions did, then ticked off the ones I wanted to be sure to make for my four Alliance characters. It was a bummer, initially, to realize that only the major glyphs are trainable, and that so many of the pre-375 glyphs (i.e. everything 350 and above) require materials from Northrend. Oh well. Wrath of the Lich King will be here soon enough. I hope that it doesn't take until then, however, for my inscription research spell to conjure up the mage polymorph polar bear cub and penguin glyphs (I caved and bought one of the latter for 75g but would like to be able to make them). Wish me luck.

Here's What I did Once the Servers Came Up on Tuesday

I lol'd that I actually thought my ain server would be up and playable on patch night. It's twitchy even on non patch weeks. My secondary server was up, however, and I was able to log on there and play around a bit. And as an aside, I've had the missing flying mount and 1 pet returned, but I am still without my Black Tabby.

But on Wednesday, my main server was crashing less often so I dove in.

After milling and making inks for hours, primarily following the aforementioned guide, but substituting the rare inks and the cards you can make with them whenever possible, I got up to 363 inscription.

I milled about 1700 herbs or so to get there (I may be in denial and that # may be closer to 2000).

I donated 60 or so glyphs to my guild bank, and have sent out minor glyphs to friends for their alts. It's been a blast so far. And I have helped a number of 70s fumble their way through choosing and equipping their first inscriptions. It's too bad there isn't an ingame newsletter (an Azeroth Times) to push out information to folks since it appears from the "What's a Lexicon of Power? Where is Lexicon of Power?" questions that lots of folks do not read patch notes or profession guides.

The only annoyance thus far has been with strangers whipsering me, LOLing at minor glyph prices in the 35-45g range and saying "how much if I just give you the mats?" Uh, same price. Why? Simple math.

With current AH prices, leveling inscription took $1700-3400g in herbs, plus $400g training, and parchment costs. Therefore, strangers have no reason to expect me to give away an inscription I learned through research (1 possible new minor glyph every 20 hours). Prices will go down a bit overall after folks have their first set equipped, but its my opinion that glyphs should be similar in price to blue gems a few months back, especially for minor glyphs sice they are more scarce.

Dealing with strangers wanting cheap/free glyphs reminds me of how annoying leveling enchanting was, with all the non-tippers. And the peeps who would agree to a fee for rare enchants then not cough it up and find all their mats right back at them in the trade window. Thankfully, inscription's vellums will mean I won't have to go through that again -- I can just make extra enchants and cast them on vellum. I can then send them to my alts(yeah! finally!) or put them in the AH. A much appreciated alternative to reenchanting my gear over and over to skill up.

So YEAH! for inscription!


Post-patch Fatigue

I don't know about you, but I'm tired.

I've spent the past few days respeccing characters, reorganizing bank slots, reinstalling add-ons, re-evaluating y plans, etc. On top of that, I maxed out inscription at 365 (which is as high as you can get with the 350 skill level recipes that are the highest you can train up out in Honor Hold.) It made me happy to plop 50+ inscription scrolls into the guild bank last night, hopefully saving some guildies some cash.

And now that I am hearing about Grow 5 Gruul Kills and 40-minute Kara runs and such...I am exhausted. But that may just be because my achievements tab doesn't give me credit for any of the heroics I've done, and thinks that I never copleted Strat or Scholo or AQ20 which has started me obsessing about redoing them all.

Deep breath.

On the other hand, like many folks, I was getting pretty bored, having reached most of my pre-expansin goals some time ago. At least this will keep folks interested in doing runs for the next few weeks -- yeah! That means there is still hope for the raven mount in my future...

I am loving that my druid's T5/T6 healing set that was 2200 or so +heal is now 1160 or so +dmg as a moonkin. And holy smokes does she have a bunch of AOE now.

I am loving earthliving weapon and all the other talent changes for my resto shaman.

I am loving casting dispersion on my shadow priests and running around. And loving the tiny cooldown on devouring plague even more than I miss Touch of Weakness.

Mage-wise...well let's just say I saw *someone* running around dun morogh for a half hour polymorphing critters into penguins.

So despite the nasty bits, like still not havin my flier and vanity pets restored, there's lots to love in WoW these days.


Servers up and Buggy...

Learn your mounts and your vanity pets at your own risk. My server went down and I am now lacking all my non-quest vanity pets, and my flying mount, all of which were learned before the server crash. They are not in my bank, or my bags. They are not in the tab. And they are not at the stable master.

*sniffle*

UPDATE: My ticket, which was put in a little after 3:00,  has been escalated. And they now have a login message that they are working on the issue. That is comforting.


Patch Day Respecs

I've spent a lot of time over the past month thinking about how I wanted to spec my toons once this patch went live. Overall, I'm not making radical changes...except for my main's build.

For the past 2.5 years she's been a raid healing druid, tho she had an unconventional spec (officially hybrid, a modified dreamstate build heavy on the mana regen.) She had a one week flirtation with Balance when we had a week off raiding...and I used that time to grind up Kurenai faction to give her a space goat.  I vowed then that I would eventually let her go BOOMkin fulltime. And that time is now.

Continue reading "Patch Day Respecs" »


Packrats of the World of Warcraft Rejoice!

My druid's bank is full. It's always been full. There are her 35 vanity pets, the miscellaneous quest items...the full sets of Tier 1 and Tier 2 gear she can't bear to part with, the boomkin set she totes around with her...

I've gotten a lot of grief from guildies and friends over my packrattyness. "You're never going to want to wear any of that again", they say. "That crap is taking up all your bank slots", etc.  But truth be told, I didn't just keep the clothes around to play dress up -- I also kept them as mementos from my early days raiding. I mean, after all the bad luck I had pursuing [Will of Arlokk], I just can't shard it now can I?

As it turns out, Blizzard is rewarding packrats like me in two ways when the patch lands today:

  1. My plentiful mounts and vanity pets will become spells, freeing up 2 bags
  2. All the "crap" in my bank that dropped off final raid bosses will be proof of my killing them for their associated achievements

Unfortunately, I didn't save much that dropped for my main in heroic dungeons-- she usually had better gear from raiding than anything that could drop for her in them. I have a feeling though that after the patch we will see some renewed interest in heroics, for the achievement factor.

Today's post-work WoW agenda: Level inscription. Learn all mounts/vanity pets as spells. Reorganize contents of newly thinned-out banks. Retrain everyone.


WotLK: Factions to Grind

When it comes to picking factions to grind, I keep in mind a few variables: gear I can use for a specific character, supporting recipes for their professions, and vanity pets. I mean, would I have ground out Sporeggar rep to Exalted had there not been a [Tiny Sporebat]? No way!

With that criteria in mind, I made a list of the Wrath of the Lich King factions known to have reputation-based rewards.

Neutral

The above factions with a * allow you to purchase a tabard at Friendly. When worn in a dungeon, that tabard allows you to earn rep with that faction, regardless of the reputation associated with the dungeon in which you are fighting. A nice way to encourage folks to branch out into a variety of dungeons, rather than living for a month in one just for grinding rep.

In addition to the above factions, if you are an engineer interested in acquiring the plans to make a [Mekgineer's Chopper]/[Mechano-hog], you will have to grind 4 factions you might otherwise skip maxing out: Horde Expedition Exalted (The Hand of Vengeance, The Sunreavers, The Taunka, and Warsong Offensive) or Alliance Vanguard Exalted (Explorers' League, The Frostborn, The Silver Covenant and Valiance Expedition). As of right now, I haven't seen any details on faction-specific rewards for these individual factions. There is a quartermaster for the combined grouping, however, the rewards are not that interesting other than the motorcycle. But as with anything not yet live, that remains to be seen.

The biggest surprise to me after reviewing all the reputation rewards was the lack of Blacksmithing, Alchemy, and Enchanting recipes from faction grinds. I'd gotten quite used to making my druid enchanter chase after a variety of factions to round out her enchanting repertoire.

Details on specific faction rewards after the cut.

Continue reading "WotLK: Factions to Grind" »


My First Raptor

This morning, my troll shaman dinged 30, and hurried off to Sen'jin Village to pick out her raptor. She is both my first troll and the first character I have leveled to 30 since the entry-level riding skill was brought down from 40 to 30 (the others were already 40+ at that time.) I can only imagine how much less painful her mount will make the STV and Desolace quests.

Of course, as a shaman, she had ghost wolf with its 40% increase at her disposal already. But there is something special about your first mount regardless.

Next tasks: go grab flight paths in Arathi, Desolace, then head to STV to start the wild animal eradication project for good ole Nessingwary.


List of Lists: WotLK Info

Too Many Annas has put together a great compendium of WotLK information resources.

Be sure to check out the Banana Shoulders-produced "Siha's Inscription Guide" linked to therein and go cry. I am not sure where I can stuff any more herbs before my Scribe-to-be's bank explodes. Her recommended shopping list is a little more than what I have on hand right now:

  • 150x Earthroot, Peacebloom, or Silverleaf
    (DONE)
  • 100x Briarthorn, Bruiseweed, Mageroyal, Stranglekelp, or Swiftthistle
    (DONE)
  • 285x Grave Moss, Kingsblood, Liferoot, or Wild Steelbloom
    (NEED 40)
  • 270x Fadeleaf, Goldthorn, Khadgar’s Whisker, or Wintersbite
    (NEED 50)
  • 270x Arthas’ Tears, Blindweed, Firebloom, Ghost Mushroom, Gromsblood, Purple Lotus, or Sungrass
    (NEED 50)
  • 235x Dreamfoil, Golden Sansam, Icecap, Mountain Silversage, Plaguebloom
    (DONE)
  • 490x Any Outland herbs
    (DONE)

Guess my day's WoW plans are now clear to me...


Cooking Achievements in Wrath

Although it's not as awesome as "Iron Chef" you can earn a "Chef" title from achievements after Wrath of the Lich King launches. To earn the title, you need to complete all of the following cooking achievements:

  • Grand Master cook
  • The Cake Is Not A Lie
  • Kickin' It Up a Notch
  • The Northrend Gourmet
  • Second That Emotion
  • Critter Glitter
  • Our Daily Bread (differs for horde and alliance)
  • Dinner Impossible
  • Captain Rumsey's Lager
  • Sous Chef
  • The Outland Gourmet

Read on for details on each achievement's criteria.

P.S. Collecting all the recipes in game is not required for the Chef title, but it is a related achievement. I've compiled a guide to all the recipes currently available in game and how to obtain them.

Continue reading "Cooking Achievements in Wrath" »


Welcome

This is a blog dedicated to chronicling my day-to-day adventures in the World of Warcraft. I've been playing for three years, and raiding since my first character hit 58 and we needed another healer for Molten Core.

My first character and main is a druid with a hybrid spec who raid heals. But come Lich King, I am speccing her BOOMkin and making my shaman my primary healer. Other alts at level cap are a frosty mage and two shadow priests (1 horde, 1 alliance. shhh.). Other areas of interest/obsession include working on maximizing my professions...and hoarding vanity pets.

Happy adventuring!