Friday, January 30, 2015

Raiding - Trash farming? Since when have we gotten anything useful?

It's the end of the medical rotation year, so all our old trainees are leaving so last night I had a farewell dinner for them.  There was much amusement when I said that I had to leave at 8:15pm or so.

"Why do you have to go?  Aren't the kids in bed?"
One of my colleages gave me a sly look.  "I think she wants to go play World of Warcraft."
I gave him a rather direct glare, softened by a grin.  "Now how did you know?"
His mouth fell open in disbelief.  "You know, I was actually JOKING...!"
"Well," I replied.  "I wasn't."

So off I went home.  On the way home I got a phone call from Aimei, wondering where I was. I reassured him that I would be online to raid and he said that Una was not feeling well and might not raid.  My heart sank, thinking that Alca also would be busy looking after her so that would mean two people not able to raid, one being an amazing healer.

I got online, got myself settled and Alca and Una were in the raid but they wanted to leave early.  I did want them to stay, but if they left halfway through the raid I would be stuffed - I wouldn't be able to drag out replacements. Though, Bish said he was going to be late, so I could use him as a sub at 10.  But what about a DPS?

Dragonray was also having concerns about her gear and damage, and wanted to sit out. I knew Arelion was keen to raid and since he was tanking the weekends he would benefit a lot from seeing the fight and even rolling some gear, perhaps.  He was keen, in fact he was keen to be a sub most days of the week (except Wednesday) and was always ready on the standby in case we needed him.

Crooked also suddenly turned up a little late which threw the mix out even more especially when he said that he wouldn't mind sitting out because he wasn't feeling that well.  ARGH!

So, I made the tough decision, I made Alca and Una sit out (much to my distress, I would have liked to keep them), and Dragonray.  Bish made it online just after raid started and Crooked was made to stay to help heal (he was top heals on Kargath previously) and I got Arelion in.

Well.  Now this was interesting.

Tanks: Aimei, Snowcaller
Healers: Crooked, Navimie, Koda, Biship, Punchynok
DPS: Sevrus, Azadelta, Madcow, Fallnapart, Arelion, Kyjenn, Hwired, Discoisdead, Duckalot, Luxygaga, Cptsars, Kelthal, Lushen

I see 4 ranged.  And 9 melee.  That's just crap for tigers!

So our first attempt felt slow and poor Luxy was being eaten by tigers running THROUGH the flames to get to her... which was a bit crappy.  Also, we had a couple of times where some random people got sent up instead of Kelthal and the second time that people go up, it's always harder for me, there just seem to be more bombers and Bileslingers, but maybe that isn't the case, it just FEELS like that's the case.  Tigers were up for longer which was an issue since we had so few ranged.

I asked Crooked if he could DPS.  We probably didn't need 5 healers anyway.  He was a bit surprised, as he was the highest heals according to Skada (but according to Warcraft Logs he was the lowest - I don't understand these logs) but I said we needed ranged DPS more than we needed healing, and if I felt like we needed 5 healers again, I'd get Cptsars to heal so I could get rid of a melee.

And that second time it was much better.  I think the extra ranged helped.

The loot was very shiny.  Luxy got Treads of Sand and Blood, and Disco got Casque of the Iron Bomber.  There was a bit of fuss about the remaining loot, Champion's Medallion, which I'll mention a bit later.

There was one more item, Chestguard of the Roaring Crowd, but I hadn't made my mind up about it yet because I was thinking about that neckpiece.  And we were off clearing trash, which kept my mind very busy with healing and little time to be thinking about loot or whether I should be taking it. We made it to the stairs and there was no trash loot from the mobs - which was what happened last week.  I remember thinking "Trash farming? Yay for all this nonexistent trash drops and the big repair bill!" and just when I was about to open my mouth and complain about the lack of trash drops we had a shiny Milenah's Intricate Cloak drop.  Madcow snapped that one up.  And then when we were in the Twin Ogron's room, Hwired disconnected.  And there on the trash mob was a Gill's Glorious Windcloak.  I think I screamed that I wanted it.  Maybe a little too enthusiastically.  So we had to wait PATIENTLY until Hwired got back on so he could distribute loot.  It was around this time the healers started to discuss that cloak and the Champion's Medallion - I already had a Mythic Warforged one, Bish had a Mythic with a socket, and Koda had a heroic version.  So I tried to make her take but she refused.  Arelion also refused to take loot - I reassured him that nobody would think he didn't deserve any loot since he tanks on the Sunday and shows up to help with raids during the week, and he has a really high priority loot, but he dug his heels in and said no, because he didn't feel comfortable taking loot when it was his first time here and people had worked hard for the loot and he was a "ring in".  Kyjenn was also chatting to him a lot about it, encouraging him to take stuff but once Arelion has made up his mind he can be pretty stubborn about it.  I understand where he was coming from - if it had been me I would feel uncomfortable if it was my first time in the heroic raid group and I took a loot that others could have taken.

So after looking at that loot, I decided that I would take it, since Koda had a Heroic Warforged one and Bish had a heroic one (and I had a normal one). So that worked out very nicely for Koda and myself but not so nice for Bish.  He wasn't fussed though. Oh, and that Chestguard of the Roaring Crowd... since nobody took it, and it was the mythic version of my chest, I decided to take it.

But that wasn't the only trash drops, there was a mythic warforged Grips of Vicious Mauling that Kelthal grabbed as well!  So that was a good trash farm!

Twins was very hectic.  People were bad at dodging fire at first, but they improved as the night went on.  However, we were still well behind on damage I think and people were still dying despite healers best efforts. I was being an absolute ninny and somehow managed to die from charge 3 times.  Ugh. I think it was time to finish the raid!

One more night of Highmaul left!  Boy am I looking forward to it!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Raiding - Faster clears but more stuffups

I have seen a definite pattern to my gameplay.  I have found that when I have to be woken up to raid because I have inadvertently fallen asleep putting the kids to bed, I play like an absolute MORON. Especially when Aimei has to ring me to get on for raid.

I also thought I was doing well in terms of healing, but really, when it was not because of skill it was because of gear.  My poor healer buddies all had ilvls of 658 or so whilst I was up at 669.  And it's not that I have awesome gear.  It's they have really BAD gear!  When they catch up I will be probably be the healer carry!

So here's my raid highlights for the night.

  • Firstly, Shoushiro has made a comeback.  Now that his account is unbanned, he is playing again and there was a request for him to be able to come to heroic raid.  His ilvl is rather low, so I wasn't happy about that especially since he could do with some gear from heroic dungeons, normal Highmaul and LFR.  So I said he could come for the first 3 bosses but I wasn't pleased because there are others who would love to come to heroic raids and I don't let them. However, Shou was supposed to be part of our raid team anyway and we could use a rogue.  He rolled Throat-Ripper Gauntlets from Kargath and got Flenser's Hookring from the Butcher.  I had to DE a dagger later - made me wish I had brought him but rules are rules! 
  • Kargath was smooth as silk.  You expect that though if we're already doing Mythic. Shou was the only death but that wasn't unexpected. It takes time for the melee to figure out not to stand on the sides where ranged are standing (which is next to the fire poles).
  • Butcher was a bit hairy.  For some reason Cptsars had somehow migrated to the middle instead of being on a side and so he got every stack for the first 5 stacks.  It got sorted but we ended up a little behind on heals and then people started to drop off towards the end of the fight.
  • Brackenspore also went well, except Aimei dying, which we couldn't do much about since he had Necrotic Breath on him and was getting smacked by Brackenspore.
  • Tectus was where my dumbass playing showed me up.  I died TWICE, the first time from trying to run through Crystalline Barrage to get to the rest of the team, and the second time from trying to get around a mountain spike and got spiked in the butt and died.  Definitely NOT my finest moment.
  • Twin Ogron's was where Aza was having a moment. He died twice from being in the blaze. Though to be fair he was on the phone to work, and somehow managed to be in the wrong spec.  Maybe he got woken up just before raid as well.
  • Ko'ragh was at least a one shot but the melee took a beating - KyXyn and Disco were following a tank with Expel Magic: Arcane which is a death sentence, and Koda kinda forgot to tranq during shadow and Kyxyn died again from a combination of shadow and fire.
  • I thought we had a good chance for an Imperator kill but it wasn't to be, and we were taking more damage than before.  Mines were not as good as Monday either, and tanks also didn't get their debuff to run away fast enough and health was low in general.  I had woken up by then so I was being a little better with my placement of things like Efflo (trying to get two shifts from mine out of one Efflo) but mana was not great, not like it was on Monday.  Also, we had 3 extra DPS so that made the strain a little bit more as well.
  • I had to DE a lot of plate, especially boots.  I wish Yeti (on her pally) and Arelion had been there.
  • Koda and Bish got some good upgrades by the end of the night - at the end of last week she still had 3 blue items and she got the Champion's Medallion from Kargath, and then a heroic warforged Gill's Glorious Windcloak (I wanted it but she needed it more!) and then Mountainwalker's Boots.  She went from 658 to 666 by the end of the night!  Bish also walked out with 3 loots too - Crystal-Woven Bracers, Emblem of Caustic Healing and Destablised Sandals (I can't believe Blizzard spelt Destabilised WRONG) and also joined the 658 to 666 club.  He was wearing ilvl 610 blue boots.. OMG!!  Cptsars also walked out with 3 loots - Flenser's Hookring, Moss-woven Mailshirt and Phemos' Double Slasher.
So, still a fun night, but fraught with errors.  Tonight is Mythic night so let's see if we can get Kargath down without too many stuff ups and at least have a few goes on Twins!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Guildleader chores - The Draenor casualties and pressure of Mythic

The raid leader of another guild on my server was chatting to me the other day, and saying "What's going on with your guild?  So many people are leaving!"

People never believe me when I say to be patient and things settle down. It's as if they think I'm making it up when I say I have been in this guild at the start of EVERY EXPANSION and I watch people come and go.

Since raiding started, I saw Dragonray's Caelestrasz friends (Ravzz, Drauka and Daenerys) leave and join another guild. Brahski had a few friends who came back to game but got bored and have already stopped playing. Siness, Genesis and Sunny were fun to play with, I am sad that they aren't around, they seemed like decent people. Vaakis, who came back to game and moved his toons back into the guild, moved his druid out to a New Zealand guild so he could see a bit more end game - I can totally understand that (though he left his alts here in Frostwolves).  Souglyy and Vexil left for personal reasons, and the latest round of leavers are Roshii and Chosenx who are going to raid with their real life friends who have come back to the game.

Roshii leaving was sad, as he has been here since Cataclysm, but it was hardly surprising. He objected very strongly to EPGP and found the whole system unfair, the concept of "buying" your loot. He is not the only one who had those concerns, Aza said the same thing too.

Xyn said that he also thought that loot council was a better loot option than EPGP, however, in a casual guild, I think loot council doesn't work well and Xyn even agreed with that. It alienates the casual people who may feel like they are turning up just to ensure that the regulars get loot, and that's not exactly fun.  It would just encourage them to turn up LESS.

However, on a positive note, I think I'm finally seeing the group beginning to gel.  The raiders all know each other now, and there is more comraderie between them, and a little less tension. Raids are a little quiet but most people are trying to concentrate, I guess. But I'm happy with how it's all going! Heroic cleared and a mythic done - yes there's only one week left to go, but we can step into Blackrock Foundry and hopefully get a bit more momentum than we did when we were starting raiding in Highmaul.  Also, Sunday is going so well, and a really solid group of casuals are turning up (if only there were more healers!) and I am really pleased that it's going well. There are also a regular group of the mythic/heroic raiders who turn up to the raid as well, and that's great to see.  On Sunday I was a little late and there weren't enough healers and we had 4 druid healers, it was pretty funny. An overload of druids and hunters and no warlocks or rogues... guess what are the coolest classes to play!

I've been really impressed with Arelion and Bleidd's tanking.  The two have been communicating well and Arelion has been really calm and patient. I am hoping that we can squeeze Arelion into some heroic raids so he can gear up for the weekend and at least sub in for heroics, which would be really good.

If we can just keep the current numbers, we'll go OK.  We can still raid mythic with our current raid team setup, if we don't lose anymore people.  A lot of guilds are recruiting on the server, and our chances of picking up people if we drop below 20 are very very slim.  Siege, which made a comeback with the release of the expansion, has dropped below the numbers they need for mythic, and it's a vicious cycle once that starts - people want to do mythic, but can't, so they look for other guilds that can accommodate them but that only reduces the number of raiders further, and then now they'll need to recruit even MORE people... it's the slow spiral towards death for a raiding guild without the social cohesiveness. I look at our current crop of raiders and wonder if we were in that position how many of them would stay and how many would leave looking for greener pastures? I think I would lose somewhere from 3 to 5 raiders, but we could still do heroic.  I wonder how far we will get in the next raid?  There are only 3 days left of Highmaul before Blackrock Foundry comes, and I am excited!

Raiding - Ahead of the Curve: Imperator's Fall

It was Australia day and a lot of people were out partying and socialising and we were down a few people, but we did have 4 healers and 2 tanks turn up!  The final raid numbers were 19 and maybe there was a chance we could get it with less people around.

Alca asked if he could call out the healer cooldowns and I was happy with that - I could concentrate more on healing then rather than yelling things out.  And he did a fantastic job - so he should, he was a guild leader and raid leader.

Healing was heavy, and at first, we were doing with 4 healers and there were 17 in raid, but 2 stragglers turned up (Duck and Sev).  I asked Nok to heal then and he did for a bit but we were behind on damage so he switched back to DPS.  Poor Nok! I told him to use the guild bank donations since that's what they're there for, but he insists on buying his flasks.

Sure enough no hunters in raid.  What were we going to do now for the Arcane Wrath debuff?  I asked Crooked and Luxy to do it, as they are quite good friends and would work well together. Luxy hadn't done it before, but it turned out well because the two of them could heal themselves as well (though their damage was lowered because of the running around they had to do)

We kept getting to the fourth phase and dying. People were still too close for replicated Force Nova. Adds were still up and dying caused raid wide damage. I despaired of ever having the heals to be able to do it as I was OOM by that stage.

However, as we did more attempts, I was doing better with mana.  I had already switched to Dream of Cenarius to try to conserve mana yet still put out some heals and help with a tiny bit of damage, and Koda was having more mana issues than me, so I got her to drink in the first transition and I drank in the second transition.  I'm not sure when Bish and Alca did their regen but Bish was happy he was getting back to full mana.

Mines were done really well.  I only remember a couple of mine pops - poor Una popped one as she tried to run out with the Arcane Wrath (and died) and Bish popped one and lived (and I have no idea how he didn't get stunned in more mines), and maybe the tank ran over one... but that was over the whole night. I was very happy with that.

I had one giggle bit when I told Koda to drink, and Hwired heard me say "tranq'.  "Why the hell do you need to tranq, everyone's full health!" he said, loudly.  "I SAID DRINK!" I yelled back. "Stop interfering with the healing stuff and concentrate on your stuff!" LOL, I hope nobody got freaked out about us yelling at each other but it's only officer yelling and Hwired is hilarious that he stickybeaks into all aspects of stuff, so I wasn't upset but it was funny, to me.

On our kill attempt things people were doing much better in terms of reducing the damage they were taking, and so healer stress was not as bad.  When we hit phase 4 and everything was replicating, most people were alive and we had cooldowns.  Both the tanks died, one got rezzed and the health was ticking down and down... OMG we can do this, we ARE doing this!!

There was much excitement and much relief!  Luxy and I both rolled Staff of the Grand Imperator, and Aza took the one that dropped off the boss.  Cptsars got Reaver's Nose Ring, and Exray got Gor'gah, High Blade of the Gorians (with socket).  Nobody wanted the tanking ring Shockwave Signet, so Falln rolled it and got it offspec.

Tanks: Aimei, Snowcaller
Healers: Navimie, Koda, Alcatots, Biship
DPS: Sevrus, Madcow, Kyjenn, Hwired, Azadelta, Luxygaga, Crooked, Duckalot, Fallnapart, Una, Punchynok, Cptsars, Lushen

Grats Frostwolves! Wewt, 7/7H!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Minipost: Only 4 raid days left before Blackrock Foundry

Though we have done better than I expected in our first raid of a new expansion, now that we are about to start a new raid, I REALLY want to kill Imperator Mar'gok on heroic.

We started raiding with lots of hunters and mages, and now we are down to very few!  In fact, tonight we will have no hunters raiding (Ultra is on holidays and Kelthal is not raiding tonight), and if Dragonray doesn't turn up then we won't have any mages either. That means we are going to be melee heavy. Ugh.

It might work better with less people to be honest, but we'll have to see how that goes, really.  Maybe it will be easier with less people.  Maybe not.

Balkoth was saying that he felt that BRF was coming too soon because they hadn't killed Mythic Imperator yet, but it didn't take him long to get that down. It's a very different benchmark, of course, because they clear mythic content each tier, so that's what they should aim or.  I hadn't really aimed for clearing it on heroic but now that we're close, I want it.

Looking at what we're doing currently, it would seem sensible that we go straight into heroic Blackrock Foundry when it's released, since the normal version has gear that is below what we are wearing.  Of course, if we are struggling then we'd take a step back, but I was hoping that we could leave the normal run for Sunday so we didn't double up kills.  Sunday runs have been going well, actually, as Arelion has really taken his role seriously and has been dedicated to playing on Sunday. Firehybrid has been tanking with him on Bleidd, and though I was a bit anxious about it at first because I'm used to him on his mage, he's actually been really great and the two of them have been tanking well together. We actually got to have a look at Mar'gok on Sunday which was great for that team, but a kill is not quite there yet - a lot of people hadn't seen the fight before and it is a lot to worry about if it's your first time.  But I was pleased that we managed to do that in 2 hours.

Alca suggested that we take a core team and get heroic Imperator down but I don't like that idea.  We all worked to get here, we all want to kill it.  I don't want to cheapen my experience and enjoyment (which I get from doing it all together as a group) just to get an achievement that only a few will get. I can't imagine the uproar that would cause!

Gladiator's Coliseum Tournament - The Hunger Games of Azeroth

Getting the stuff done for the Gladiator's Sanctum can be a little bit annoying! Whenever I've been in Ashran I kept seeing people getting the bones and I wanted them too, so I finally gave in and dumped my inn and traded it for a Gladiator's Sanctum.

It's not a pretty building.  There are a lot of achievements associated with it though which will probably take me the whole of the expansion to get (and I very much doubt by the next expansion I will be doing any Ashran) and the other bonuses is that the tribute (which are the work orders) gives a decent amount of gold and draenic dust as low level PvP gear comes out of it (which is only good for one thing - disenchanting). It also gives honour and conquest points, which is ok I suppose if you're not capping conquest every week but with Ashran, arenas and BGs, conquest is not hard to cap.  I admit I have been very lazy though this season and have not been pushing rating, preferring to play around in Ashran instead grinding achievements.

Doing the Nemesis things is a bit annoying.  You start off by getting ONE kill. Not many outdoor places to kill these things, so I do them in Ashran, but after your one kill you have to go out and complete your quest so you can start your 500 kills of each race.  Which means another 2 hour queue for Ashran.  BLEH.  Would probably be ok on a PvP server, just go out in the world somewhere and hunt down that race and kill it and you can avoid that queue and requeue.

At level 3 you gain access to the Highmaul Gladiator's Coliseum Tournament - which you see in Kargath Bladefist's Lords of War episode and if you raid Highmaul then you would recognise it as the same place.

Once up though, it's a little different to the Kargath Bladefist fight!  The tiger pits are closed and there are these piles of bones everywhere.

I'd gone in on Friday with Shab and Sev - Shab had gone in previously, and he prepped me and Sev on what to expect. We teamed up, with me trying out Moonkin, and Shab had the clever idea of polymorphing us to heal up.  We got a few kills our first round and second round.  There was a rogue there complaining about people teaming up and complaining and saying how crappy it was.  And I was thinking how it was just like Hunger games, making alliances so you can win, and then turning on each other at the end.

On our third round, Sev was getting smashed and he was yelling for polymorph.  Shab and I killed the guy who was on Sev and Sev healed up and soon after I was burned down by a hunter.  Shab and Sev killed him and then Shab was running around the arena trying to unstealth any hidden rogues.

"Shab," said Sev.

"We gotta get any stealthers out!" yelled Shab.

I was giggling.

"Shab, look, there's only 2 gladiators left alive.  That's you... and me."

"OH!" Shab sounded a bit sheepish.  Then he sounded indignant.  "Oh... I'm not ready!"

"You should let him win," I said to Sev. "He saved you!"

"No, no, let's do it properly.  You ready?" said Shab.

And so they fought it out.  And Sev won.  Woo! Now he was a Lord of War!

I wanted to go again, but Sev and Shab weren't on! So I decided to try by myself.  I didn't last long.  I got 2 kills in before I was toasted.  So I sat down and watched the match for a while.  I saw a boomkin come out of hiding trying to take the last paladin down, but it was a good fight and the paladin won.

It was cool, all our followers are in the stands! I even got to see the ghost of Admiral Taylor.

So I decided to try it as heals, and my first forage was a success! I got 9 kills (well tagged people who died) and so I decided to try again.  Not so lucky the next time.  3 melee targetted me staright up - a DK, ret pally and something else and I was the first to die.  Poop.  No kills that round!

I watched the event until it went on for a really long time and then the bones all turned into fire and there was a purple circle in the middle that kept sucking the last 2 combatants in.  This was what Luxy had told me - that healers can win if you wait until the end because they can knock people into the fires and win that way if they just survive till the end.

I've decided that I will wait and go in again with a bunch of friends. It's no different to going into Gurubashi or Darkmoon Faire arena with all your friends!  So look out Coliseum, Frostwolves are getting ready to fight!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Minipost: Crazy Cat lord

I could turn this into something dirty, but I will take it as something cute instead!

Zarg is standing in Warspear just opposite the Honour and Conquest quartermasters with his cats Crusher and Fang. I'm not sure what the one he's holding is named.  Zarg says:

Zarg like kitties. Zarg train his little kitties to be cute little warriors.

What? Why you look at me like that?

You got something against kitties?

No Zarg.  Not at all.  You're a cute orc :)  It's kinda how I imagined Morzierz.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

The Top 3 Draenor Quest Achievements that I'm glad are over

Unlike those Draenor Quest achievements with friends I wrote about earlier in the week, these achievements can be done alone, and are actually BEST done alone. They are also only able to be done when doing the Apexis daily (or if you are on the Garrison Campaign for that area) which means you have to compete with all the other people around for the items... FUN.

Some are not so bad, but these three were the worst ones in my opinion, and I am glad that I never have to do them again! So here they are! Feel free to comment if you agree, disagree or have an even better one that you thought was a pain in the butt!

#3 Delectable Ogre Delicacies - Bloodmaul Stronghold, Frostfire Ridge

Ogres obviously love to eat meat.  I was surprised that you couldn't find Delectable Ogre Queasine around here as well just so I could feel queasy whilst looking at poor little ratties skewered over hot coals.

These bloody things have regular spawn points but the food that spawns there is randomly one of these three foods: Rat Skewers, Charred Boar Chops or Toasted Roach Crunchies.  Only one of them sounds yummy, really. Strange that they're listed as NPCs on WoWhead too...

There are quite a few places that it spawns, and these are the waypoints I used:
/way 37.7 16.7
/way 39.25 16.96
/way 41.14 13.76
/way 39.4 19.7
/way 37.27 17.27
/way 39.9 12.6

In general, you'll find them inside the ogre houses/towers on what looks like an indoor barbeque (wow that word looks so wrong, so used to just writing BBQ) - see pictures above.  Oh, autocorrect is telling me Americans spell it barbecue!

Back on topic... I have also seen it close the lava in the open flat ground with cages where there is a big bonfire - there are two that spawn along the edges of that area. Flat stones that could be low tables also have been noticed to have food on them.

People describe jumping between different servers to do the achievement, and I think that's a cool idea if you have battletag friends on other servers, I think it's a bit crap if you join an instance group through group finder and just use them to get your achievement and not help them with what they were originally asking you to do (unless of course they make a group saying they are looking for cross server quest achieves)

#2 Bobbing for Orcs - Shattrath Harbour, Talador

Now this achievement is just... LONG.  You don't have to wait for special respawns (well, not really) because all the things you need are right there in Shattrath Harbour.  Look at all these bodies!

Unfortunately, the achievement is a real drag - pun intended.  What you have to do is tow these bodies to the steps, and when they're on land, you burn them.  Doesn't sound so bad, does it?

That is, until you realise that when you drag a body it moves 10 yards if you're lucky! Then you run back, click it, drag it another 10 yards... this achievement could take all day.  The secret is to get the bodies that are floating near the steps so that you don't have to drag it so far.  I did one body that was far out to sea and it took me a good 10 minutes to drag it into shore.

There are three steps at the harbour that you can do it at, and the best way is to keep running between them to see if any bodies have respawned on the steps.  The day I did it, Cptsars, Aimei and I were all doing it and another few people as well so it took us a while to get our bodies.  I whispered the other guy doing it when he said he had only 3 more to go, and he told me he couldn't wait till he "never had to do this piece of #$%@ again".  LOL. I know exactly how he felt!

#1 Breaker of Chains - Bloodmaul Stronghold, Frostfire Ridge

When I first started this, I never saw an Orc inside a cage - I only ever saw Draenei! For a long while I had only seen one ever, and Aimei clicked it - darn it those things are not shared! Then, after one patch it was as if they fixed it and now we would actually see Orcs in cages!  You can see how they're highlighted - it made it heaps easier to spot.

There were a couple of good spots that I found that were good for cages.  I took some screenies to show that these cages do exist!

West of the lava, near a large bonfire (40.8, 12.8)
Looking down towards the sea.
There are a few cages aroud the buildings, where there are lots of pigs around
51.26, 16.66 outside the cave where Rugrum the Pit Boss is
Another good spot was down near the rare, Tor'goroth, as there definitely a few cages there, and if you're lucky, some might be horde cages. I would often wish the Alliance would come and open up all those Draenei cages and maybe the cages will respawn as Orcs!

Luxy managed to do hers on a PvP server (she said she got 30 in a day!) but I managed to do it on Saurfang, in the early hours of the morning and late at night when the daily had just changed.  Just be persistent - it won't be long before people get sick of doing their Apexis dailies and you'll have the place all to yourself.

Good luck on your achievements and hang in there!  They're annoying as hell but they can be done with a little patience (or a LOT of patience!).

Friday, January 23, 2015

A Free levelling guide - for one day!

People are always selling weird stuff out there. Kurn sells her Guild leader guides for money (and it's not a small amount of money).  We are forever getting spammed in trade chat about people selling levelling SERVICES and mounts, pets, achievements, gear and the like for real money (I though that stuff was against the terms of service with Blizzard), and there are a zillion gold making guides out there that you can buy for real money.  Wow, making real money out of telling people how to make pretend money in a game.  It is BOGGLING!

I got an email from Killer Guides who told me that they were having a one day free download of their WoD levelling guide (which normally costs $35).  Was this for real?  I get skeptical, these days I am having a crap ton of stuff in my email from all sorts of sites wanting to promote themselves.

So I had forgotten about it, and then when I went to look, the event was today. And there it was, a download button.  I was scared.  Am I about to be spammed with viruses and worms and other annoying things that hijack my browser and make me search with their piece of crap search engine?

I went through their site and looked over everything.  It seemed to be a clean website, actually full of guides about various games, just like they said.  I went to the WoD guide to see if it really was free and it was, so I made sure all my adware and virus stuff was updated and clicked the download button.

Well, it turned out to be an ordinary PDF which was clean.  And it was actually a real guide.  I did, for a moment, worry that it was some sort of porn.

So I read through the guide, which is a pretty simple all round guide.  It  to everything from dungeons to raid encounters.  It's no Icy-Veins, but it has a short summary of each boss in Highmaul and Blackrock Foundry which was at least useful to me, though not any more useful than the in-game Dungeon Journal.

The levelling guide was interesting, with suggested directions and quests to take.  Well, it was about as interesting as it vaguely interesting to someone who doesn't LEVEL alts, but I can always go back and look at it when I get back to wanting to level Minndy.  She

So, if you want a free levelling guide, you can only get it for today (in Australian Eastern standard time that's 0600 on 23 January till 0600 24 January, or Pacific Standard time 22 January for 24 hours) go and get it here at Killer guides.

And no they're not paying me. But I woudn't talk about it if it wasn't free.  I would never recommend spending money on guides and things.  Money should be spent on mounts and pets! /grin

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Wolves, wolves everywhere, but at least I am now a true Frostwolf!

Questing in Frostfire ridge is enough to get most people to Revered with Frostwolf Orcs, and the last bit needs to be ground out in the level 100 areas in Frostfire Ridge.  A number of my guildies are already exalted with Frostwolf Orcs - Luxy, Cptsars and Azadelta - and I was eager to join them, just for the title.

Grinding rep with Frostwolf is also great for levelling bodyguards. I did quite a few bodyguards that way, and Magnarok is the best place to farm bodyguard rep and Frostwolf rep, as there lots of little mobs that give only 1 Frostwolf rep but they give 10 bodyguard rep!

I managed to get to exalted Frostwolf Orcs with my last bodyguard, Tormmok, and he so kindly posed with me for a screenshot in the Garrison sporting my new title and riding the original Frostwolf Howler from Alterac Valley.

Is that not the best title for someone in my guld? :D OMG I totally forgot to get the Frostwolf Pup out for a picture!

And I should go check out what mount I get with this exalted reputation. Not that I particularly care about mounts, more to add to the collection that I will never use... like Garn Nighthowl.  I was lucky that day - someone was asking around for people for Nok-Karosh, and I asked him how they were doing loot. I had heard there were some unscrupulous people around asking for people for a group then masterlooting the mount or something equally unsavoury.  Anyway, after multiple false starts with Alliance pulls and a different Horde group pulling, we got both Horde groups together and pulled it and OMG I rolled the winning roll, and a shiny new mount.

Luxy teased me.  She said it was typical that I would get the mount when I am the one who doesn't care about mounts.  Oh, and I also let another wolf out of the bag. This Garn Steelmaw came out of hte invasion bag.  He looks like he's trying to pass a stool!

So I went to pick up this new Swift Frostwolf mount. I don't think there is such thing as too many wolves.  This silvery grey colour is not bad, I like it. And here I am sporting a Frostwolf tabard as well.  I think I should make a new transmog for the occasion!

Darn it, I still forgot to get my Frostwolf Pup out for the picture. But Durotan doesn't seem to mind.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Draenor Quest Achievements you'll need to bring Friends For

There are a ton of Draenor Quest Achievements located in areas with the Garrison campaigns  or Garrison Daily Apexis quests - and some of them can't be solo'd, you need to have a group to do them cooperatively. These co-operative quests don't have to be done when you're on the associated daily (which is great because you don't need those who-cares-about-achievements sods running around doing their dailies and ruining your hard work), so if you have a bunch of friends and want to do some group achieves, these are great time fillers!

A-VOID-ance - Shadowmoon Enclave, Shadowmoon Valley

According to WoWhead, you don't have to be on the daily Assault on Pillars of Fate to be able to do this, and it's probably better if you don't do it when people are on the daily because they're more likely to stuff up your achievement!  I wasn't sure, but I thought the portal only spawns during the daily because I had never seen it at other times, but the day that I managed to do it, it was the daily.

The portal to the Void realm is usually protected by a couple of mobs amongst a ring of stones. The one I went to was close to where Kenos spawns.

Once in the realm, it looks like this - there are bubbles protecting areas, and you can see over in the distance of this picture another bubble, and that's where Kenos is summoned.

So this is where you need your friends.  There are three stones that need to be clicked.  You need at least three people to click the stones but you can have as many people doing the achievement as long as they don't mess it up!

So the achievement itself is to not let Void Implosion kill any Coalesced Void Fragments.  These Void Fragments are adds that spawn and have to be killed because when they are alive you are unable to attack Kenos.  Kenos casts Devouring Void which explodes after 8 seconds, causing a Void Implosion.  Void Implosion does 20k damage to those around you and instantly kills any Coalesced Void Fragments within 8 yards of you.

So it sounds pretty easy - kill Kenos, and if you get Devouring Void on you, run away from the adds, but kill adds if you don't have the debuff.  Fortunately for Arelion, Cptsars, Aimei and myself, there was nobody in the zone who came along and stuffed up the achievement - you know what it's like when you are doing the daily and a rare pops up, everyone and their dog comes along and starts wailing on it!  If anybody had come along and wasn't watching their Devouring Void debuff.... poof, say goodbye to your achievement!

The Power is Yours - Shattrath City, Talador

This achievement can be done at any time, so a good time to find the crystals is when Assault on Heart of Shattrath isn't the daily, but if you're lucky and in a group when you find the crystals, even better, you can at least kill mobs towards your daily.

There are three different crystals - Rune Crystal: Fel Fire, Rune Crystal: Arcane, Rune Crystal: Fire and each gives a different buff.  What you need to do is have each person get one type of crystal (you can only have one buff at a time) and then go out and kill mobs. When you attack a mob, there is a chance of proccing the attack from the buff when you use a special ability, NOT A NORMAL ATTACK.

So we had to go find a high health mob and then attack it lightly with our lowest damaging special attack (as a guardian druid I was using lacerate) and when the mob got all three of our debuffs, we got the achievement.

You can find these crystals clumped together in certain underground rooms (I found mine at 32, 23 but there are other spots like 33.4, 40.3) and you have to have 3 people to stand on runes to unlock them, but the solitary crystals can be found all around the city.  The crystal buff lasts 5 minutes, so if you do go around clicking individual crystals, make sure your friends find their crystals quickly before the debuff drops off.

Heralds of the Legion - Shattrath City, Talador

You don't have to be on the daily to do this one. It's actually only one of the rares in the Hearlds of the Legion achievement which needs a group  to summon and you could get away with any 5 people really, as long as they all stand on a rune. Orumo the Observer is in Shattrath city at 31.4, 47.5.

I've read reports that you can do it with pets and warlocks using their teleport but it's just a lot easier to do it with 5 people.  There are 5 runes on the ground (see the picture below) and each person has to stand on one and they all have to be active at the same time for it to be released from phase.  I've tried it with lock pets and mage pets, and it doesn't seem to activate the runes.  Orumo also drops a pet Eye of Observation which is a personal loot so anyone who kills it has a chance to get the pet. Remember standing on the rune hurts a little bit and if Orumo comes out and targets you straight away with an eye beam you better have some decent health!

As a side note, Luxy noticed that Orumo's name is spelled incorrectly on the achievement.

A Demidos of Reality - Socrethar's Rise, Shadowmoon Valley

Demidos (found 46, 71.7) is a rare spawn at Socrethar Rise. It's popular to farm because it has a chance to drop the pet, Servant of Demidos.  Like the other rares, you don't need to be on the daily to do this achievement. You get the achievement the first time you kill it.

I've read about people soloing it, but why bother - more chances for pet to drop when you have more people in the group!  Can be done with two, better with more.  If you have good self healing and interrupts and good damage then you could solo it. So technically, not a group quest, but it's one of those ones that's better with buddies.

Have fun out there achievement hunters!

Friday, January 16, 2015

Raiding - Frostwolves first Mythic kill!

The title is a bit of a spoiler, but yes, we managed to down Mythic Kargath last night!

I had some pre raid worries, nothing big, nothing more stressful than say, trying to figure out which pair of underpants to put on after you shower, or which pair of socks I want to wear with my sports shoes. Were we going to get 20 people? What if we got WAAAY more than 20 people who would I sit out?  The first one was easy - if we don't get 20, we're not doing mythic. The second concern was a bit tougher - if we get more than 20 then I'll go on volunteers and low attendances.

So we had exactly 4 healers turn up - 3 druids and a shaman (Alca has decided to go back to his shaman which is great - firstly because that gets his rogue out of my tier, and secondly because it's nice to have a healer that's not a druid or a priest and thirdly his shaman is an amazing healer).  Morz was going to be out doing fitness stuff and Bish was going to be late, but he would be on.  Koda said that she was tired after having had a fun day out in the city after seeing Wicked the musical and visiting the museum, and was happy to sit out for Bish.  Dragonray and Madcow offered to sit out, which meant we had ZERO mages in raid.

So we were all pumped, and ready to go.  Then the funnies began.

Amayeti kept disconnecting.  Not sure why, but on each pull she'd freeze or disconnect. I was already going to let Koda relax, but it looked like I might have to keep her.  And then Bish was coming on so I let Amayeti see if she could fix her computer and net, and let Koda go out and got Bish in.  I asked Crooked if he could offheal for me and he said he would.  Which, by the way was very kind of him since he was the #1 damage for heroic Kargath, and asking him to heal was a big loss.  But he did it with no complaints though in hindsight I'd probably get Cptsars to heal to cut the melee down a bit. In fact, I am going to use Crooked as my prime example the next time somebody whinges about having to do a particular raid assignment making their DPS lower.

Well, it was like a disease.  Bish AND Amayeti could not stay online.  I was so bummed, I had to remove them both from the raid and Koda came back.  I was about to get Nok to switch is mistwalker offspec and heal but Alca said that we probably could do it with 4 healers - most of the things killing people are one shot mechanics anyway and no number of healers is going to improve that.  So I got Madcow back in and we went with 4 healers.

For those who haven't done Mythic, it has a few extra things compared to Normal/Heroic.  Firstly, there is this crowd cheering bar at the bottom "Roar of the Crowd".  It basically is a bar that says how much the crowd is cheering for you, and the more favour you have the more damage you will do. You gain favour by going up into the stands and killing Iron Grunts and also the Bileslingers and Bombers (coz they're assholes and the heckle you which makes you lose favour, as well as throw crap at the raiders in the arena which hurts).  You also gain favour when you kite Kargath's Beserker rush around before you make him run into a fire pillar - I guess the crowd loves a good show. We actually found it VERY difficult to kite him unless you were a hunter with a double deterrence and a Hand of Protection, so after a few tries of people kiting him and failing because he runs so damned fast, we decided to forget the kiting, do it how we normally do it so people can actually LIVE.  Losing favour is more of an issue.  If the person who is targetted by Beserker rush dies, we lose ALL of our favour.

One thing we did notice also was that if Kargath killed someone in his path whilst doing Berserker rush he would suddenly target someone else.

The other thing was the tigers in the pits now jump out and chase you. You have to run them into fire pillars and then they'll start spinning around in circles and will take more damage so then ranged have to get them down.

So our first hiccup was a healer one - trying to stay connected.  Then we had great amusement as the melee tried to figure out where to stand so they wouldn't die.  After a few times we started betting on which melee would die on the first berserker rush.  Hwired was having a shocker and it was probably just as well Disco wasn't there because he would probably have been a casualty as well. What ended up working was 2 seconds before the Berserker rush, the melee would back off from Kargath and see who he targetted.  It was great when he targetted a hunter - or rather, when he targetted Ultra.  Kel was having a DREADFUL time trying to kite and deter that we had to change it so that there was NO kiting at all, and he just stood still, double deterred and got a hand of Protection. HOP people! Not BOP.

I went up in the stands - normally Amayeti goes. Do you know what I had difficulty with?  Jumping OUT of the stands.  "Jump down!" Exray or Ultra would yell and there I was trying to jump off not being able to get over the wall... panicking... and worse it was all on live stream because Dragonray wanted to watch.  SHOWING LEET SKILLZ THERE!

So I started practicing jumping up onto the edge and healing and then jumping off, and one time I jumped off following Ultra and then thought OMG I went too early!! Because next thing you know, Aza was dead.  I felt so bad.  Everyone was laughing... but it turned out they were laughing because Aza had jumped from the stands straight into a tiger pit.  Phew. Not my fault then!

We had one attempt where we were so close. 4% HOLY CRAP!  We actually CAN do this!

A few more goes after that, we nailed it.  It was dead.  OMG our first Mythic boss of the expansion!

Now this is actually a Frostwolves first - usually we never even clear the bosses on normal before the next tier comes out (and technically we still haven't - we still have heroic Imperator to go), and to do a mythic boss in the first released raid of an expansion, it's pretty exciting!

Loot was pretty awesome!  A few of us rolled some loot - me with warforged Throat-Ripper Gauntlets (and a socket!), Koda got Kargath's last link, Aimei got Chestguard of the Roaring Crowd, Snowcaller got Casque of the Iron Bomber, and Lushen got The Bladefist.  Loot was snapped up quickly too, with Luxy and Crooked getting Grips of Vicious Mauling, Lushen getting warforged Throat Ripper Gauntlets, Duck got Casque of the Iron Bomber and Una got Vilebreath Mask.

Great work Frostwolves! Now, to get Imperator down!

Thursday, January 15, 2015

My Best Invasion Score to date!

Botani has SO MANY mobs that it's probably the easiest one to get a high score.  I had said earlier in my invasions post that it was one of the harder ones because of the sheer number of mobs, but it's very easy to get gold in Botani. Kyxyn and I had just done a Botani invasion right before this one with a big score and it was interesting that my mobs were slightly different to his - I always seem to have Alliance spies, and workers to rescue but he doesn't have as many as I do.

Prior to this the best score I had was with Luxy and Crooked when we got 1928 (or something like that) and I was super impressed because my normal scores are around the 1400-1500 mark.

Anyway, with Platinum invasions coming soon, I shall have to work out ways to get better scores for Shadow Council and Shadowclan and Ogre to make sure I'm in the 1300+ range.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Navispam - The tale of visiting the Wyvern's Tail

Early server maintenance is good for one thing - visiting friends on EU. I thought I'd go and see if Kim from Wyvern's Tail was around since she and I had been chatting lately on twitter and on my blog.  We had met... oh a long time ago now! And I remember winning a prize in her Hallow's End Screenshot comp... oh that was in 2013! Gosh we have known each other a while LOL!

When I first logged into my character on her server I did a /who of her guild and it ended up showing 0 players online.  Oh well.  So then I thought I'd better start my questing so I can send her a mail, and whilst I was killing quillboar I thought I'd better add her as a friend so I can keep an eye for when she gets online.

Boy was I surprised when I did that and she was already online. I looked closer and realised I'd spelled her guild name wrong /facepalm

Anyway, I sent her a tell and she was there and we started chatting :)

I had been perusing her etsy store and I asked her why she didn't do some WoW themed things there - she makes some cute jewellery (was eyeing her Totoro in a bottle) and maybe we shall see some in the future!

So she kindly agreed to meet me in TB and so off I ran to meet her.

So we talked about game, and Garrisons, people getting bored of WoW but yet we're still here and not bored... in fact, I just blabbered on and on, poor Kim. As always I'm very excited to meet one of my online friends and all those questions that I always have bubbling to be said on the tip of my tongue pour out when I see them in person. I was a little slow, Pepe was on her face when she first arrived and I was so busy trying to get in position for a pic that Pepe poofed before I could screenshot Daeaye with Pepe on /cries

I was chatting about achievements I'd been working on lately, and she says she's been doing dungeons. I haven't done any posts on those quest achievements, and as I said to Kim, that darned garrison... I have a love hate relationship with it.  If addiction is anything, that Garrison is it. I hate being in there because it keeps me from blogging but at the same time I can't seem to tear myself away from the things that need to be done like checking my work orders, mine and herb, missions, followers etc etc.

And another thing I realised that I had not logged into my EU toon during the 10th anniversary AT ALL so I did not have all the cool MC things.  Damn it!

So this was her favourite pet.  Good choice!  I think that the Alliance were shortchanged on that gryphon hatchling since the Wildhammer hatchling looks very similar to it, yet the Windrider cub is still a unique model.  She said that she and her boyfriend Seeg both have one, they were gifts to each other. Awww :D

It's time for bed for me, so a big thanks to my friend Kim from Wyvern's Tail for letting me Navispam her and dragging herself out to TB just to see me! :)

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

My daughter found MORE things I didn't know in my Garrison!

I'm not very good at finding things in my Garrison - in fact when I'm in there I'm pretty business oriented, sending my followers out on missions, doing work orders, sorting out guild donations and then chatting to my friends that I don't take the time to find things or explore.

There are of course a few things that I have seen, like the cave underneath the fishing hut in the water which has a small stash of resources in there.  I showed it to my daughter and she loves going there to check it out - and in fact did it on Minndy and got the resources there (Lady Sena's Materials Stash), and was very proud of herself.

Pile of rocks inside the cave - pic from Wowhead
Yesterday she surprised me when she was exploring my garrison and she came across Lady Sena's Other Materials Stash.

Picture from WoWhead (my daughter forgot to take a picture for me!)
In the Horde Garrison it's near the tower that has the portal to Ashran, behind the Primals vendor. Wow, I had no idea it was even THERE - shows how much I look around my garrison...

Really, Lady Sena should look after her stuff better. I don't even know who she is.  Wowhead says she's Gazlowe's assistant, but I can't find her in my Garrison...

The other thing my daughter found was this axe in a stump.  I thought I had seen a few of these things outside in the world and so had ignored it but actually you can click on it and loot up to 10 Practice Target Axe.

You can throw these at your critters in the Garrison! I tried throwing it at the training dummies but that didn't do anything (maybe because I can't wield Axes or throw things) but I did kill a bunny with it.... poor bunny. My daughter thought it was mean to throw it at rats (because we keep pet rats) but she had no qualms about finding snow bunnies to throw it at!

So just goes to show you the wonder of youth and the joy of exploring. I guess I'm too jaded and work focussed to be running around looking under every nook and cranny - thank goodness I have a daughter who will do that for me.