Saturday, January 30, 2010

What I'm Doing and Planning, January Edition

Been pretty busy around this house, trying to push an elephant through the eye of a needle. There just isn't enough room. My subscription to WoW ran out about the same time I stopped receiving child support, so I am playing the remaining time on hubby's account, then waiting until the tax return gets in to pay for a whole year, so that I don't have this problem next year. I'm not sure how long it will take for child support to kick back in, so I may be cutting off internet for a while, in order to push as many pennies at my mortgage as possible. Lunch ladies just don't make enough money to pay the bills of a 6 person family alone.

On a positive note, this will encourage me to get some spring cleaning done, work on my Wii Fit, and become a little more comfortable with a Playstation controller. I have been wanting to try out Fallout 3. Even though hubby has invited me over to his computer to play, I would rather do it during the week uninterrupted on the console while he is busy playing Battlefield Heroes with his friends. That, and we have all these other games on there that I keep hearing other people rave about; The Orange Box, Bioshock, Little Big Planet, and Lego Rockband. I am looking forward to trying them out, tying up the console while the kiddies do their chores and homework! Oh, and I found Oblivion sitting in a desk drawer. That could occupy some space on my laptop for a while. I never got past the first part of that game, as we were busy raiding Burning Crusade content when it was gifted to me.

As for in World of Warcraft, my fun with my druids was cut short, as was my unspoken goal to get Shawndra a couple of nasty two handed axes and return her to dps. Instead, I have been gearing my hubby's mage Sinnerman, and leveling his bank alt druid Bourguignon. I just love his druid! His coloring and horn style really make him look French, and the name we picked for him is so fitting (and makes me hungry!) When my favorite pally tank and company are not on (we now have a full group, with a healer and everything!) Bourguignon gets to heal lowbie stuff or place auctions, and when he is on, we run stuff with Sinnerman. Oh, and I have been leveling professions for Sinnerman, too. Sinnerman is almost to BC content with his jewelcrafting and enchanting. I think I also forgot to mention Muppsy, my baby gnome warlock. I had to have some way of hanging out with the Illuminati Order on my alliance server, and she is fun, even if I a frustrated by her always backing into danger while fearing off opponents. She got to run Ragefire Chasm yesterday, and got a new belt. What is it with people only going to the first boss, and skipping the one that drops the sexy red robes? Silly Alliance players.

So, that is what I have been doing and what I plan for some f the future. I will still have wifi access to update the site with tales of my escapes into video game land should I turn off the internet for a bit. I sure hope it doesn't come to that. I would miss my friends, and all of you! Have a great weekend. I hope to have a post up soon, probably something about bettering an arcane mage. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Why Join The Queue At All?

Today, I started out checking my auctions on Rowena, then got a whisper from a friend. We could run together! We're only 10 levels apart now, so I suggested Scarlet Monastery, and roped hubby into logging in his 39 blood elf rogue. Then, she remembered she hadn't spent her talent points since they were wiped, and begged forgiveness and promised to run something with us later in the week. That's fine, said Nira, and promptly hopped into the looking for group queue. She's been living there since level 15, and it has treated her well so far. Tonight, Nira's first run was Scarlet Monastery - Graveyard. This went without a hitch, Nira got a necklace she couldn;t use, everone said goodbye, and that was it. Nira spent about 20 minutes repairing and restocking in Thunder Bluff before deciding that she didn't want to heal anyone else. So, I logged in Lostariel.

Lost's first instance was Gnomeregan. Tank number one disconnected shortly after zoning in, leaving us with 4 minutes until we could kick her. The warlock, mage, and I cleared some trash in anticipation of a replacement, as the hunter had left when we noticed we had no living tank. Lost dinged 28, took the quest for her grime encrusted ring, and a balance druid and a paladin joined us, We headed down the corridor toward the clean room. Someone said they had to go afk for a minute, so Lost cleaned her ring and a few grime encrusted objects The paladin disconnected. Then, another person dropped group. That was pretty much the end of it, and everyone left to do something else. Frustrated, I logged out and logged in my rogue, Maura.

Maura queued for the random dungeon and started turning in quests. She then set out to find the parts of a book, but ran into the Frost Nymphs. She took the head nymph's quest, then stealthed and picked all the lesser nymphs pockets, then gathered 13 of the 15 ice elemental shards she needed before she finally got her invite. She ported into Utgarde Keep, poisoned her blades, and got ready to start. Maura was just above the healer in dps, and just below the tank. The tank kept losing aggro to the other dps. At the pull just before the first boss, we wiped. the healer and the tank agreed that the tank needed a higher health pool, so the paladin dropped. Then, everyone else did. Maura ported out of the dungeon, turned in the ice elemental shards, picked the dryad's pockets one more time, and hearthed.

I logged in Niranjani one more time, thinking I might want to run another dungeon. Five minutes passed, and I just shut the game off. Ugh. Maybe I'll respec one of my three druids to tank and try that out for a while. Or, there is always Shawndra. I could macro a disclaimer before every instance. What would I say? Maybe,"My main is a healer. I haven't tanked anything since Karazhan. If you have crowd control, be prepared to use it." Yeah, that sounds good. And maybe, just to really scare them, I will equip my level 70 tanking trinkets, since they are all I have. No, no, I am not that desperate for a run with a tank in it that I would go and be one myself.

I started this post yesterday and am lost as to where I was going with it. *looking at title and rubbing chin* There it is! Tanks disappearing not even 4 minutes into an instance has to stop! That's all I have for today. I have been scooted to hubbys machine so he can fix my user interface(another reason I didn't feel much like playing yesterday, it's hard to dps the point and click way!) so that key bindings will work on my rogue. Lostariel is nearing her 29th level, and soon comes the gearing and enchanting fun. Stay tuned!

Friday, January 15, 2010


I'm thinking of doing one of these posts for each of my heavily played characters. Since Lostariel is my project right now, I have added her rss feed to the right of my blog. That area will change as my project or main changes. Here she is. Neat to have a blog post that changes with your character!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Twink Alliance Druid - 29 Wish List

Lostariel did not come out to play today, my interest instead in playing my Horde druid, Niranjani. Same play style, different shaped character. I did, however, pop my nose into WoWHead for some ideas for what Lostariel will want to be wearing to start playing the 29 twink battlegrounds. Here is her list. If you can think of something that I have missed, feel free to comment.

Healing Gear

For headpieces, there are many options, but the chance at getting them are small. Three of the five I am considering drop off rare mobs, one of them a rare boss in Razorfen Kraul. Until I can get that, my eyes will be on the auction house for the other 4, which are all bind on equip.

Emblazoned Shoulders are the only find I had for caster leather shoulders in that range. the Berylline Pads that drop from Razorfen Kraul are better for the added intellect and stamina.

For the chest piece, there are only random green items. Looking at cloth, the Beguiler Robes are very nice, as are the Mechbuilder's Overalls. Since Halinka hasn't done Gnomeregan all the way through yet, this may be the time to farm for them. Or, Lostariel could just turn off her experience gain and hope for a lucky drop! While Halinka and Lostariel work their angles, Minya will sit by the auction house and hope for a miracle, as they are both bind on equip.

For the wrists, there are a pair of bracers for sale on a vendor that have a nice chunk of intellect. With some help, Lostariel could get these for killing an old orc warlock. Or, these might show up in the auction house. Cloth wins, again.

For her hands, there are few options. If she wants to wear cloth, she might get these, or even these. Leather loses for no extra spell power with only this pair or this pair to consider.

Around her waist, Lostariel will probably run Blackfathom Deeps for this. Remember, this is just a starter list. I already know that there is better from the Highlanders with reputation and some gold. One of the random dungeon reward belts might also find it's place here, if it has good stats (Nira got an "of the Vision"model tonight, with 8 spell power, 4 intellect, and 2 stamina!).

Cloth wins again in the pants department. These pants are pretty rare, so second best seems to be these, followed by these leather pants. I might even consider these above the leather for the spell power bonus.

Footwear is important, but in this case, they will be replaced. This pair from Gnomeregan will probably suffice, or just grab any random of the Eagle high level green leather pair off the auction house. If you enjoy Arathi Basin as much as I do, you will be upgrading those pretty quickly!

On her back will be any of her closet full of Tumultuous Cloaks. Not only do they match everything, but they outdo every single cloak in every single dungeon you are running. If you don't have the exact type you want by the time you hit 29, turn off your experience gain and keep running random dungeons. It will drop in your bag eventually, along with a number of cloaks and belts you don't want.

Baubles. Every girl likes to have a ring or two and a necklace. Lostariel is no different. If she ends up in Razorfen Kraul (why wouldn't she?), a escort at the end will net a nice ring. Another possible drop would be this ring. She could have this one made or quest for this one. There are more out there, but these seem to be the best of them. As for necklaces, she would like this one, but might have to settle for this one.

Last but certainly not least, the weapon. This staff that drops of Twilight Lord Kelris in Blackfathom Deeps is nice. I have never seen this drop in the Stockades, but it could. There is a nice PvP staff to earn, as well, though I doubt it is better than either of those.

Trinkets are part of the earned gear post, so I won't go into detail. From my post on 19 twink gear, the trinkets there are still worth the trouble. The stats will be slightly higher, of course.

So, there is my plan for gearing up Lostariel for 29 fun in the Reckoning Battlegroup. I hear they are planning to have their first scheduled run on the battlegrounds this Thursday at 7 Pacific Standard Time. Here is the organization thread. Hope I am ready by then, and looking forward to meeting new people!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Turn The XP Back On!

I tried. Lostariel sat in the twink battleground queue for 45 minutes during peak play time twice this last week, and got nothing. Today, frustrated after only 20 minutes, I turned to the Reckoning battlegroup forums. A post titled,"Is 19 dead?" or something similar caught my eye, so I read through it. Turns out all the 19 battlegrounds have dried up and the serious twinks have blown over to the Ruin battlegroup. Great. I just equipped those boots for nothing. 19 just isn't worth transferring.

Good news was just a few posts lower. Seems that the Reckoning battlegroup has become THE place for 29 battleground twinking! All I have to do is turn on the experience gain for Lostariel, research the next level of gear, and start running instances again. I think Lostariel should be well enough geared by mid week to make the first of Reckoning's scheduled battleground gatherings.

Tomorrow I hope to have a shopping list ready for everything a healing Druid needs to start out in the 29 bracket. If I start her in the battlegrounds early enough, she may have good enough reputation to get gear from Arathi Basin.

Sorry about the short post. Writing on an iPod is difficult! If you have any suggestions, please feel free to comment below. I could certainly use the help!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Come Back When You Don't Suck

I have about had it with the attitude a lot of low level dungeon runners have. Today I have been in two groups where the tank pulled as much as any tank that overgears a Northrend heroic and expected me to keep up. The last group I had a paladin pulled most of the front part of the room with Twilight Lord Kelris, and the boss, then when I was the last one standing...

If you care to read his parting lines, be my guest and click on that picture. Sure, I'm not wearing heirloom gear like he is , but I have kept up with my level in gear, and it's not feral gear!

I guess I will have to rest in the knowledge that some have told me I was doing a good job. I'm a girl, and I reserve the right to get snippity and stay that way for no good reason for hours. If this gal at Hots and Dots can, I can too.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Twink Alliance Druid, Continued.

Lostariel has been a bunch of fun to play. So much so that I totally blew off planning which quests to complete and what gear to purchase. I should have done this a few days ago, but I have been running random instances with great people and a few schmucks, and here I am still making excuses for not posting more about my experiment sooner.

Lostariel is 19, with her experience turned off. I found some great deals on the auction house (a Tree Bark Jacket for 9 gold!) and had her equip them. Here is her armory link so you can see her progress. Has she got everything from the list in my head? Not quite. Let me show you what I have planned for her gear.

Head - Lucky Fishing Hat. This may take a couple of Saturdays to get or more, so right now she is wearing Green Tinted Goggles.

Neck - Sentinel's Medallion. Currently she has nothing, but has a Thick Bronze Necklace waiting in the mail(which may have been equipped by the time you read this).

Shoulders - We got our Talbar Mantle! There is a crafted cloth piece I'd like, but first I have to find it!

Chest - There is just no replacing the Tree Bark Jacket when it comes to making a 19 caster or healer twink. There is no equivalent leather piece.

Wrists - The Crystalline Cuffs Lostariel picked up in Ragefire Chasm are pretty nice. She will probably keep them, and get a pair of Wrangler's Wristbands of the Eagle. Of course, a pair of Mindthrust Bracers would also be nice...

Gloves - Gold-flecked Gloves are a nice pair of gloves for a caster, even a leather wearing caster. No leather gloves at this level come close enough to consider.

Belt - Lostariel is wearing the Girdle of the Blindwatcher for it's wonderful stats. She also has a belt from her aquatic form quest, which could be a nice save in a pinch. Running all these random instances, there is the hope that there will be a caster friendly belt in the bag, but so far all Lostariel and WoWHead have seen for leather belts have been of the Wild (+10 attack power, +3 Stamina, +5 Agility) and of the Bandit (+5 Agility, +5 Stamina, +10 Attack Power). Some commenters on WoWHead claim to have seen of the Monkey and of the Moon. I'll be hoping for an of the Sorcerer drop.

Pants - Smelting Pants from the Deadmines ae a good pair for any druid specialization. For more mana, I am thinking of picking up Rigid Leggings of the Eagle (+5 Intellect, +5 Stamina). I didn't find any cloth items that did as much as these.

Boots - These have been tough to find. The Bandit Boots Lostariel is currently wearing were an upgrade from some Bard's Boots of the same type. I hate to upgrade, because, really, how can you get better looking than these? You can't, but you can get better stats, and that is where the Spidersilk Boots come in. I just sent off materials to get these made to a tailor in my guild. Leather boots are mostly for melee classes, so cloth wins again

Back - The Spidersilk Drape is a lovely piece. I am still hoping for a nice from the random dungeon bag of goodies. We have a nice bunch already, one of Stamina(+8 stamina) and one of the Moon(+4 Intellect, +2 Stamina, +4 Spirit), and a couple of melee types in the bank. Again, I am hoping for an of the Sorcerer drop.

Rings - Lostariel has one ring on at the moment, because she is waiting for her wonderful husband the death knight to run her through the Stockades. Once that chain is complete, Minya and Lostariel will be haunting the auction house, waiting for a Blood Ring to surface. I am also toying with the idea of getting a Bronze Band of Force. It is said to be a solid choice for any type of druid, and the +spell damages is said to be about 6.

Weapons - Druids can't dual wield at 19, and one handed weapons with an off hand don't match up to the stats a single staff provides. There are many staves available to the twink. The Twisted Chanter's Staff gives the most benefit, even though it is rather plain. I kept an Emberstone Staff just for around town.

Trinkets - Got nothing in those slots yet. Here are the available non-profession trinkets in the 19 twink universe.

For the heirloom trinkets, the stats are below, since WoWHead only shows them at level 80 stats.

Discerning Eye of the Beast
Equip: Increases spell power by 7. Equip: Restores 2% of your maximum mana whenever you kill a target that yields experience or honor.

Inherited Insignia of the Alliance
Equip: Improves your resilience rating by 6. (-0.42%)
Use: Removes all movement impairing effects and all effects that cause loss of control of your character (5 min cooldown)

Swift Hand of Justice
Equip: Improves haste rating by 6. (+3.69%)
Equip: Heals you for 2% of your maximum health whenever you kill a target that yields experience or honor.

The Arena Grand Master trinket takes a bit of work, and quite possibly some big, bad level 80 bodyguards. You need to collect 12 Arena Master trinkets to get this one. The on use part of this won't work for a lower level character, but the stamina is what it's all about. They are not unique, so stacking two of these is possible.

The Hook of the Master Angler is a hard one to get, especially if you are little. It has no worthwhile stats, but it is something available to the twink as an option. It is a trophy, useful only if you got that before you got your fishing hat.

I will be dragging Halinka through the random dungeon system as a healer to get the emblems needed to get at least one Discerning Eye of the Beast. They are not unique, so it is possible for her to have two. If I can get the hubby to escort me in the wee hours, I will be trying for an Arena Grand Master, just because I have never tried for one before. As a druid, I really don't feel like I need to get the PvP trinket with an enormous cooldown, but if the shards are there, I might pop one into her bags, just in case. None of these bind, so if Lostariel ever goes feral or just doesn't need an item, it can be shipped to another character.

That is all I have for now. Lostariel has been sitting in the Warsong queue for alost 20 minutes now with no bites. My next post will be on the status of the 10-19 battlegrounds in the Reckoning battlegroup. Stay tuned.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Twink From Scratch - An Alliance Experiment.

My hubby has reinstated his WoW account, so he suggested a project we can work on together. This is a great project in that I get to explore twinking after Lich King, after the option to do away with experience gains, and after the looking for group dungeon overhaul. I think the last thing is one of the great random things that could help make twinking great, giving people non-cookie cutter gear options for their new character.

Here I am at the starting phase. The character selection screen has changed for the better. It tells the new player just what they need to know to start with their chosen class and race. I have labeled this picture to show how it helps.

  1. Racial Awareness. Everything speial you have or get to do because of your race is listed here.
  2. Your background as a member of this race is here. Just enough to start you off in elementary role play.
  3. The role you play in a group setting is here. Roles available are tank, damage, and healing, and you can be more than one, depending on your class.
  4. Did you want to wear a pretty dressie? Than a warlock is a good choice. Not many pretty dressies in the leather, mail, or plate categories.
  5. What you can expect to be able to do in your chosen class is here. Pets, damage over time spells, and specials that require imprisoned sols. Fantastic!
  6. Yes, your main power source is mana. Deal with it. If it weren't you'd be an enraged warrior, an energetic rogue, even a runed death knight. Or you'd be confused and be a druid.
  7. Here you find everything you wanted to know about warlocks. What kind of damage they do, how society feels about them, and what general stats your gear should be sporting.
Now, the picture is not entirely indicative of what I plan to play. The gnome was just cute! Next we have to decide what Race and class combo suits your style of play. Lately, I have been better at casting and ranged combat than I have been at melee, so I want a caster or a hunter. I like to heal, even in PvP, so my choices are down to druid, paladin, priest, or shaman. I like to twink the 19 bracket, just because it is the easiest to get to, with the least spells, and only one battleground. That, and if I decide that the 19 bracket is too slow, I can always turn experience gains back on and start working toward the next bracket.

Here is a breakdown, by class, of healing spells available to the level 19.

Druids have Healing Touch, Rejuvenation, Regrowth, Cure Poison, Revive, and Mark of the Wild as their restorative skills. Other helpful skills include Hibernate (to get rid of nasty hunter pets), Entangling Roots, Nature's Grasp, and Travel Form (or any form to morph out of traps and snares).

Paladin have Holy Light, Purify, Redemption, and Lay On Hands as their holy spells. In the protection tree, they have some mitigation in Divine Protection, Hand of Protection, and Hand of Freedom. Other helpful skills are Devotion Aura, Blessing of Wisdom, Blessing of Might, and Hammer of Justice.

Priests have Lesser Heal, Heal, Renew, Dispel Magic, Cure Disease, and Resurrection in the holy tree. Power Word: Fortitude, Power Word: Shield, and Inner Fire in the discipline tree are also great tools. Other helpful spells are Psychic Scream (for when they found out you were healing), and Fade (to get the random hunter pet off you when it was running around uncontrolled).

Shaman have Healing Wave, Cure Toxins, Ancestral Spirit , and Tremor Totem as their restorative spells. Other helpful spells and totems are Ghost Wolf, Earth Shock, Wind Shear, Purge, and Stoneclaw Totem.

I have to admit I am biased toward the priest. I know priests because I play them. The paladin and shaman with only one useful healing spell apiece at 19 really don't interest me much, even if they have many other abilities. It's probably the melee feel they have with their heavier armor and weapons that turn me off. The druid, however, might win out for the difference of its healing (heals over time dominate their skills, even at 19).

Here comes the hard part. As I mentioned in this post, racial traits do matter! As a druid, I would only be able to be a night elf, with Shadowmeld, a higher chance to dodge, and a boost to nature magic resistance (plu the get out of snare free by shapeshifting). As a priest, the only race I wouldn't be able to choose (until Cataclysm) would be gnome. The benefits of certain races can be found in that post I linked earlier in this paragraph, for those who want to research. For me, I'm going to skip to professions.

At 19, the profession to have has always been and may always be Engineering. Engineering, throughout the levels, is known for its head gear and fun toys. There are 3 pairs of goggles a level 19 can wear if you have chosen engineering, Flying Tiger Goggles, Shadow Goggles, and Green Tinted Goggles. Since the twink profession, enchant and enhancement nerf of mid '09, these goggles will be the only head pieces with stats available to the 19 twink population, unless you fish, and even then, you cannot slap an arcanum on them. The Lucky Fishing Hat still wins for style and the extra stamina. I still recommend the goggles to at least start with. Better to have something than nothing. There are plenty of hats out there with a few armor with no level requirement, but as a healer, I skip them every time. Those kind of hats are only good for role play or your bank character. This is war!

What to choose for profession number two? At 19, there are no other crafting professions that you must have the profession to get the item, so my choice will be a gathering profession. Mining pairs nicely with engineering, giving another 5 stamina at 150 mining. Skinning is easy to level and grants 6 critical strike rating at 150. Herbalism is by far my favorite, giving a heal over time that you can use only on yourself, even in stealth or while invisible. Since it scales with Maximum health, this is a great twink spell to have.

To sum things up, I have chosen my intended race, class and professions for my twink experiment. Her name is Lostariel (means blooming), and she is on the Shadowsong server. She is a Night Elf Druid and will have Engineering and Herbalism, and level Fishing and Cooking. I chose Shadowsong because I have high level characters there that can help fund her growth, and help hubby with his project. Next article about her will be about planned gear and quests, and things bought to help with leveling.