Monday, January 24, 2011

Oops! Was That A Heroic?

Delgada in her Tabard of the Achiever
 I played a long time yesterday.  I finished Deepholm, which also finished the Cataclysm Loremaster achievement.  I did my first round of Twilight Highlands dailies, and found the only two dailies in Uldum. I fiddled around getting the 25 tabard achievement.  I logged in my bank alt and sent 1300 gold to Delgada so she could get the ultimate riding achievement.  I even managed to kill C'thun (with some help!) and got my AQ40 achievement.   I figured, I can do all that, I might as well try one of these super hard instances everyone is talking about.

The End of C'thun
So I loaded up the looking for group tool, making sure I had selected only DPS, and pulled out my fishing pole.  I fished for about 30 minutes, and was whisked away into the Stonecore.  I'm guessing I was a replacement, because there were some dead mobs where I zoned in.  Not having run the instance before, I kinda guessed that we weren't at the entrance, because there were no npc types handing out quests.  So, I buffed up and followed the pack, carefully doing my job of dps and nothing else (well, I did dispel a couple things off the tank, but you won't tell?  Good.). 

Pre-Dungeon Attire.
The first boss I encountered was a dragon, I think.  This is a little fuzzy because it was at night yesterday, and I may get things out of order.    Anyhow, seems this guy does this aoe thing, you can see his cast bar ramping up to spin it off, of crystal shards.  Before he does that, he does this aoe where stalagmites drop from the ceiling.  This actually come in handy for the second aoe, as you can use them to hide behind.  Not too bad a fight, and we were off to the second boss.  Now, I'm pretty sure this was the second boss I saw, even though it may be further in, because I was a pinch hitter.  This rock guy does that shatter thing we all love from back in Burning Crusade days, but he has this other aoe I couldn't see.  So, after the shatter was about done, I sat there spamming my shield, or dissipate if it was up, to avoid as much damage from that attack as possible.  We got through that fight, then it was on to the next. Trash fights in between seemed rather straight forward, stay out of bad stuff, don't aggro, don't aoe, follow the tanks lead for kill order.  Well, I did aoe in the room before this next boss, to get rid of a bunch of non elites in the middle, then we turned the corner and saw our last boss.  This lady was fun.  She threw rocks at you, which you could totally avoid by getting out of the dust forming around your feet.  She also put up void circles, which were also easily avoided because of their obvious targeting ring before they appear.  The boss called non elites out, usually when she ran away to her stage, which were aoe'd down rather easily.  Oh, and if you grabbed enough aggro, she had this choke hold thing, I think it was even called Force Choke. So, we didn't get her down on the first try. Or the second.  Then, the tank, healer, and one dps just up and quit, leaving me and another hanging around.  We decided to wait for replacements.  She (might have been a guy, but was in female form, so you know, you are what you wear in this game to me) told me this was her first heroic, and that is when it hit me.  This is a heroic?  Here I just thought that the instances were that hard, and I was lucky to be able to perform at all in them..  Replacements arrived, and my partner in crime ate the dust, but we finished the boss, getting me a heroic and regular run of Stonecore all at once.

So, the heroics are hard?  The instances are hard, too?  Well, it's just more of the same we already learned...stay out of stuff, don't let stuff fall on you, and for gosh sakes pay attention! Now, to start planning my next several runs...

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Starting Fresh? Some Tips To Make It Easier.

Totally Unrelated Homage To Sylvanas.

 As I have said before, I am trying out new class/race combinations, and I am making them on servers where I haven't played before.  What does this mean for my new little toons?  It means they are responsible for their own finances, their own professions, everything.

Starting out fresh isn't as hard as it used to be.  Most areas have given you an 8 slot and a 6 slot bag for quest rewards by the time you are level 10. I believe every level 10+ area has a multiple profession trainer just waiting to load you up on every possible profession you could want. Mobs are dropping less garbage than they used to.  This all adds up to making it that much easier to follow my first tip:

  1. Make a buddy for your intended main character.  Level it to 10, get professions that you are likely to use or that complement your main's, and send it to a major city.  Even if you are a mage and are able to port yourself to a main city, bag space will always be an issue.  This way, you can use mailbox space as storage, as well as the little bit of bank and bag space of your buddy toon. Make sure this buddy has your favorite auction house add on loaded when you log them in, and use them at least once a week.  Many will tell you that Friday before the kids come home from school is the best time to put up auctions.  I believe that so long as you post before you crash Friday night, you will grab a good portion of the weekend crowd, who spend more on the auction house.
  2. Sell everything!  Being new to a server, it is best to grab two gathering professions. Now that you are able to track more than one item while you are in the world, you are no longer limited to having one tracked and adding skinning. During the lower levels, I am finding that herbs sell better than ore, probably due to the high cost of converting Cataclysm herbs down to usable low level inks.  There are lots of people out there leveling alts now, so no gathering profession is a loser.  By selling everything, I mean everything.  If you must level your cooking, do it, but try and send raw meats to your buddy when they are no longer a guaranteed skill up.  Gear, even if you think it has good stats, I would send away, too, and live off the quest reward gear.  Don't discount the value of a grey item!  If you are a rogue and pickpocket items with flavor text or that you can read, send them to auction!  If you are on a role playing server, even the grey clothing items could sell.  Sometimes even the starter clothes are worth selling. If you don't want to bother with auctioning grey items, that is fine, but make sure you at least get vendor price for them.  Nothing is sadder than throwing away money when you are scraping together money to train.
  3. Buy bigger bags, ASAP.  Nothing hampers questing, and money making, quite like small bags.  You should be revered rather quickly with your home faction.  Near the flight master in each major city is a quartermaster that will sell you a 16 slot bag for 2 gold when you are revered.  This is a large upgrade for a small amount of change.  When you can, upgrade all your bags to netherweave bags (or, if you find them at a good price, traveler's backpacks).  These right now are running as low as 6 gold all the way to as high as 20 gold per server. Look for good deals, and replace when you can. If you hit revered with a second faction before you can afford to fill all your bag slot with 16 slot bags, go to that faction's quartermaster and grab their bag, too. Oh, and don't forget your buddy.  Throwing him a bag every once in a while won't hurt, and will make selling you mountain of loot faster.
  4. Be prepared.  If you are starting the day, the dungeon queue, or a long quest chain, empty your bags.  Make sure you have the food, drink, and other items you must have, and repair. Running out of water, bandages, food, and bag space all just slow down your momentum, which slows down your money making.
  5. Take a break.  I roll up a buddy character not only for banking, but to level.  Their main base is a main city, but they quest while the main is gaining rested experience.  It helps me keep from tiring of the main character, which is a big help.
That is all I do. Doing this, I have been able to upgrade to 16 slot bags on my hubby's toon, my main toon, my bank toon, and send 100 gold to the guild bank, buy glyphs for both my main and my bank,  train them both in professions and skills, buy mounts for my two toons, and even buy a few materials for my bank toon (who is an engineer), to make a few items she could not gather for herself.

I didn't follow my rule completely on my new server, and I am sure I lost a lot of profit by using the herbs the priest has been gathering to level her alchemy.  I also have lost quite a bit by not selling all the raw ore my engineer is using.  Nevertheless, I am not feeling the pinch, with 16 gold in my bank's pocket and all mounts and bags taken care of with only glyph purchases in the near future, and several auctions waiting to be sold. If you count the bags, glyphs, guild bank gift, and mounts, I have made almost 500 gold on this server, with one toon at 33 and the other at 26. Imagine if I had followed the rules and not decided to level crafting professions?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Busy Busy.

     Sorry Folks.  Seems I fell off the blog posting wagon a few potholes in the road back.  Holidays when you have kids, are busy times.  Throw in the no money for gifts for extended family, and you can get even busier!  The week of Thanksgiving break my usually dependable wagon that holds all of us (miraculously) decided it needed a new transmission, so last minute plans were made to change the venue of Thanksgiving dinner for me and my sister to my house.  Since my father was instrumental in making sure our family still had wheels after Thanksgiving, I wanted to at least make a token of my appreciation and have it ready for Christmas break, when we went down to his house for an early Christmas/late Thanksgiving dinner.

     I have been following some crafting blogs in my reader, which before the middle of this year was mostly populated with blogs about gaming.  For any interested, Dollar Store Crafts and One Pretty Thing are the big two I have found most of my ideas from.  Dollar Store Crafts focuses on the inexpensive, and sometimes recycled, end of crafting, where One Pretty Thing aggregates crafts from around the internet and posts them with pictures and links. which makes it so easy to just window shop!

     So, I have the crafting bug.  I found a project I knew I had materials for, and I ran with it.  Have you ever been given a book you knew you weren't going to read?  Here is a great fix for that.

     I took my inspiration from here , but I did mine a little different.  I cut the end off the top of a case of oranges, then cut a circle the size of a cd out of the middle.  This was the backing.  I ripped pages out of a Jude Deveraux novel then folded them down to square shape, but did not trim them.  I then rolled the cone shapes, gluing them in place, and worked my way from the outside toward the middle, folding down the cones a little more as I got toward the center, gluing them in with my glue gun.  The final layer of pages I wrapped under the frame, to cover the cardboard.  When the wreath was done, I let it hang around the house forever, then added some spray adhesive and shook some fine glitter over the finished project.  The bow is not needed, and I only put the ornament that is hanging in the empty space behind as an after thought.  Imagine how stunning that would look on a dark colored wall or door!

     Christmas was still weeks away, and hubby was saying how we needed new ornaments.  I found this on the Dollar Store Crafts site, and had to make them!  Working in a kitchen, I come across a lot or recyclable items, and one of them happened to be the tin pans needed for this project.  The dollar store has them in multi-packs for cheap, if you don't have a way to find recyclable ones.  Here is what they turned out to look like, after the kids painted them with my nail polishes and added their own embellishments(template is here).

     Not bad! I still have quite a few pans to make more for next years tree.  Unfortunately, we ran out of nail polish (never been the girly type, and I only had 3 bottles!).  Yes, the dollar store carries nail polish, too.  

     That only explains part of my absence.  Over the holidays my house is bursting at the seams with the addition of my step children.  This makes my escape to video game land much more important than updating my blog, for sanity's sake.  Since the Shattering, I have been busy leveling new characters through the new lands, gathering archaeology finds with Delgada, and tending my plants in Wizard 101.  I will end this post with some screenshots of my new characters and Rowan's garden in her new massive fantasy castle, while she tries not to dirty her princess gown and pretty pink shoes!

Bittsee Emptypockets - Priestess

Vessper - Witch under Sylvana's Command

Niranjani - druid in a boat with a hunky Tauren (yum!)

Rowan's Garden - mocking her.

The kitchen.

The Trophy  Room.
The floating graveyard.
The bar.
The sitting area.
The bedroom.
There is a dungeon, several places to enjoy the view, a dueling area, a Doodle Doug video game, and lots of grass and water in this place.  I leave you with the front view, and Rowan telling you to get off her lawn.  Yeah, she's an old lady, at 44.  So, humor her and get off the lawn!