Ironman Challenge Prep

Community effortOne of mine and Yotaan’s New Years Blog Goals  was to attempt the Ironman Challenge (attempt mind you).  The basic rules for the Ironman Challenge are below (more detailed rules can be found here)

  • Do Not Die!
  • No Potions or Flasks used.
  • No Elixirs (except those that count as elixirs for quests).
  • Cannot join a party, raid or group with the intent of getting help to further yourself in the challenge.
  • No Vanilla, TBC, Wrath, Cataclysm, or Pandaria dungeons or raids completed.
  • No Battlegrounds or Arenas allowed.
  • No Primary Professions allowed.
  • No Secondary Professions allowed EXCEPT FIRST AID.
  • No Talents, Specs or Glyphs allowed.
  • Skills you have from your class (like Warlock Healthstones or Death Knight weapon enchants) ARE ALLOWED since these are available to your class without having to pick a talent, spec or glyph.
  • No more than 9 pet battles.
  • No gear higher than White quality.
  • No food or other external buffs are allowed. Class abilities, racials and personal buffs (eg. Kings if you’re a Paladin) are okay!
  • The heirloom mount *should not* be used before level 20, since your character wouldn’t normally have access to riding if they were a brand new character on a new battle.net account.
  • General rule of thumb: Play your character like it’s the only one you have on your account. Don’t use your account-related bosts like the Water Strider mounts or anything else you wouldn’t already have on a single character for the account. Receiving anything from another character is against the spirit of the challenge: no gold, gear, bags, etc. Play with what you have been given for your lone character.

We’ve cut out a few of the rules (the no guild one mainly) but other than that, Yotaan and I are going to be sticking as close as we can to the Challenge.  Both of us will be leveling, but not together in order to better follow the challenge.  And yes, it will be a race to see who can get the highest without dying!
We’ve decided to roll hordies but we are letting you guys choose the classes.  Come pick our poison!

Fussypants: Wait wait wait, you can’t just pick everything about my toon! Knowing some readers, I’d be playing a male orc warlock before I knew it!
I plan on leveling a goblin (because when I eventually do die, the death animation will be totally worth it).  However, you guys can vote on the class! I did remove the classes I already play because where’s the fun in that?

Bonus points if you can come up with a goblin inspired name ending with ‘pants’!

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Yotaan:  I have always wanted to try this.  Of course, I’m eager to show that this old man can outplay the young whipper snapper ‘pants!!

My choices are:

The best part is, of course, that we are playing Horde!  FOR THE HORDE!!!!

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Voting will end in about a week, so stay tuned!

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Speculations about Specializations

WoWScrnShot_092015_204342Somewhat of a bomb was dropped at Dragon Con a few months ago but it seems many people did not hear about it.  To sum up what happened, Blizzard had a panel at the Con where they dropped a boatload of information about Legion.  The piece of information we want to focus on today is this (from MMO Central Event’s Live Twitter of the panel).

The overhaul of specs was to be expected as this often happens every expansion.  But the interesting piece of news was the renaming of the specs.  Currently, none of the specs in game have been renamed.

Fussypants: While I was at first a little shocked by the decision I’ve come to understand why Blizzard wants to rename specs.  As it currently stands we a good number of specs that share a name with another spec from a different class.  There are:

Frost Mages and Death Knights
Holy Paladins and Priests
Protection Paladins and Warriors
Restoration Druids and Shamans

While I know there are undoubtedly people who are super attached to the name of their spec, I am ok with changing a few so that every class has 3 unique specs.  And I would say I do have a horse in this race because I extensively play two of the specs which have two classes.

What would I like to see changed?
First and foremost, I think Holy Paladins could become Templar Paladins.  I mean, even the name sounds pretty cool! Templar.  Templar. Let lame Holy Priests keep the name ‘Holy’ (I kid, you guys aren’t lame.  But the name Holy fits your class better than it does for paladins).
Protection Paladins could become Crusader Paladins or Protection Warriors could be renamed Vanguard Warriors, since both would also fit with their themes.  I could see Frost Mages becoming Ice Mages (but I don’t know enough about Frost Death Knights to suggest a name Change).
Restoration Druids and Shamans is a harder one for me to pick a name (as I do not play that class as much as I play the others).  Spiritmender could be a cool name for Shaman Healers perhaps….

Overall, I think its a good idea to switch up the specs every expansion, names, mechanics, the lot.  Sure, some changes aren’t as successful, but some gameplay styles become so much more fun after a revamp.  It’s good for the game to keep changing so it doesn’t stagnate and decline.  Also, I really want Templar Pallies now.  Templaaaaaaaar.

Yotaan:
Now, Blizzard is trying to differentiate the specs more to fit the fantasy tropes they represent.  Some are I little less straightforward than others.  Some are vague and greatly changed from their original name.  Enhancement shaman come to mind instantly.  They are clearing the melee spec of the shaman class, but how can one name them…  A review of the class shaman faction doesn’t help.  The only option is “Earthfury” which doesn’t make much sense.   A Windfury shaman is a possibility, but limiting the name to one single spell doesn’t really fly.  I do like keeping Elemental the same name, it does fit the class and theme.  I also like Fussypant’s suggestion of Spiritmender.
Rogues could use a change.  Assassination is perfect and Subtlety I do think works.   Combat is nonspecific and could use a change.  Assassination  uses poisons to kill.  Subtlety bursts out of the darkness in an overwhelming attack.  Combat fights?  I suggest Blizzard embraces the “pirate” theme – the swashbuckling fencing master.  There are lots of choices there and the best is Privateer (the paid pirate mercenary.)
Warriors need a rework, but it’s not complicated.  Fury stays fury, as its the icon of the bloodthirsty berserker.  Arms would become Armsmaster, the ultimate weapon master.  Protection would be Vanguard.  There we go, (brushes off hands.)

What spec names would you guys like to see changed?

Times Change

Times ChangeIf you had told me a year ago that I would be raiding current tier progression, I would have looked at you and laughed.  If you had told me a year ago that I would be the officer in a guild 900 strong I would have shook my head and told you no way.  If you had told me that I would have tanked current raids, led three groups successfully to their Herald of the Titans achievement, or fallen in love with the monk class I simply would not have believed you.  And yet here we are, a year later.  And all those things are true.

A year ago, I was a part of a small but cheery little guild.  While it was full of wonderful people that I truly enjoyed playing with, it just was not a good fit for the way I played the game.  A year ago I was an average pug healer.  Occasionally I would have some really good plays but I wasn’t much special.  I wanted to raid more than the pugs I could get into, but I didn’t think there was a guild out there who would want me with my unpredictable schedule.  A year ago I was terrified of tanking.  I couldn’t even lead a dungeon at max level, let alone tank any raids.  A year ago, I restricted myself to what I had at that time.  I rarely went far beyond my comfort zones and I hesitated before most opportunities.

What was that thing Garrosh said in the cinematic?
Times change.

Today I am a proud officer in <Of The Queue>.  I have successfully lead a number of events.  I have tanked all of Highmaul, most of Blackrock Foundry, and a bit of Hellfire Citadel.  I have become a much better healer, capable of using my cooldowns and abilities in a raid environment.  I am in a raid group that is 7/13 in Hellfire Citadel and progressing rapidly.  And I now rock a mistweaver and brewmaster monk as my second main.

So many times we stop short with what we have.  We are so afraid of change and of failure that we don’t move forward.  What we have is good enough, no need to desire more.  But the world out there is boundless in it’s opportunities. Even if we fall, we can always get back up again.

Have I had my fair share of failed ventures? Absolutely.  I worked so very hard on things that completely fall through.  I’ve said “Good enough” instead of finding ‘best’. I’ve let fear keep me from trying new things.

But I’m making the conscious effort to stop.  I want to experience all that the world has to offer (both in game and out).  Instead of saying no, I want to say yes to new experiences.  Because the world moves and world changes.  Times change.

I have found my niche in the game where I am happy.  I log in and say hello to all the people and I feel like I belong.  I’ve pushed beyond my ‘good enough’ and into my ‘great’. I’ve found friends to support me and taken opportunities that I never would have dreamed of getting.  And most of all, I’ve accepted that it can change.  Everything can change. I won’t be stuck in the past, grasping at the almosts.

So this is my message to you today.  A bit sappy, I willingly admit.  But genuine.  Seek out what makes you happiest.  Times change; let yourself change with them. Find your ‘great’.

Over Flying in Warlords?

WoWScrnShot_090115_163757
Patch 6.2.2 has dropped and flying is now available to those who wish to fly.  Fussypants and I have debated the merits of flying for several months, but I did not join the commentary since opinions were very strong.  Looking forward to Legion, it appears that we will be grounded again until we complete a series of quests, grinding, stories, or something.

One of Yotaan’s goals for this end of expansion doldrums was to grind out the necessary parts to provide flying for the rest of our toons.  That way Fussypants did not have to worry about it and she could enjoy raiding and guild leading  For me, I like to have a finite goal to achieve, and this worked well.  Yotaan had already completed the daily quests, and finding 100 treasures was actually fun.  Getting revered for the 2 needed factions was not too much of a challenge either and it was completed just prior to the patch dropping.

So for the past 2 weeks, we can fly!  (cue Peter Pan music)

And it doesn’t matter, except when in the garrison, you can get to the shipyard faster.

Which is the point of this whole debacle.  Flying really isn’t that important.  We went the majority of the expansion without it and I really didn’t miss it.  Certainly, I saw way more of the landscape up close and personal and, more importantly, I encountered more danger directly.  Going to Nagrand for the first time was a challenge, because I was afraid to pull those big elites on the northwest portion.  I had to be cautious.  It made it more a more immersive experience.  Being grounded was more fun.

Now, Yotaan can go anywhere without a worry.  He can just fly right over that big threat.   However, at this point in the expansion, that doesn’t matter anyway.  Yotaan is endgame geared (not as much as Fussypants, but enough) and there really aren’t big threats anymore.  Flying now is simply a time saver, nothing more than a convenience.  We don’t care about the pack of mobs in the way at the endgame.  Before flying Yotaan would simply barrel thorough on the ground and most of the time they would be chasing him.  That’s not much different than flying over.  One could argue that a lot of time is saved flying, but that is typically not the case since there are flight points everywhere for the taxi’s.  Even with flying being faster, it really is only a marginal change from traveling by ground or flight points.

Back in Wrath, you had to jump thorough some hoops to get cold weather flying.  It was not something you got at the initial portion of the expansion, it was later as your character developed.  Further back in BC, flying was introduced and it was very difficult to accomplish.  In Mists, you did not get flying immediately either.  Only in Cata did you have flying right away.   This pattern of flying at the end of the expansion make sense to me and I am glad they are doing it in Warlords.  It’s a nice little carrot to entice you to play for more.  And, you don’t even have to do it.

So I am over flying in Warlords.  Blizzard has set the initial experience to ground Yotaan and Fussypants in the beginning of an expansion, and that is just fine.

 

This article was written entirely by Yotaan.