Beginning Anew

*tap tap* Does this thing still work?

Joking aside, hello to the intrepid few that may still be hanging out on my corner of the Internet! It’s been an enormously long period of time since I last posted here and I have to say, I’ve missed writing a great deal. I won’t bore you with the lengthy explanation for my absence — it pretty much boils down to college, work, and other real life responsibilities. However, even in this interim, both my father and I have continued to share our love of the game together. Warcraft remains important in my life, as does writing, and I wanted to take a moment to sit down and type up a post today.

While years may have passed since I regularly posted on this blog, this place still remains an important part of my Warcraft identity. Part of this is absolutely due to the fact that there was never any closure — as my life got busier, posts became more and more infrequent before they eventually ceased. Without a definitive end or hiatus, I’ve always viewed the blog as a project I will or should pick up again once I have the free time. Sort of like the last item on my To Do list, it has lingered in the back of my mind for years.

More fundamentally than this, I’ve come to realize that the blog likely will always be a part of my WoW identity. For one, many of my earliest experiences and friendships in the Warcraft community are cemented within the archives. Even though we may not blog much any more, I still keep in contact with friends that I made half a decade ago because of this site. However, it was actually the words of someone I met at Blizzcon that fully clarified my own feelings for the blog. Upon meeting up with an artist friend I had been mutuals with for years on Twitter, they exclaimed, “oh, you’re the one who writes that blog! Growing Up in Azeroth!”. Keep in mind, even by the time I was meeting this person, I had not been regularly posting for some time. Those words really stuck with me, and even got me to try and get back on the blogging bandwagon for a little while.

I’ve given those words a great deal of thought over the years and realized something — I don’t think I will ever fully turn out the lights here. I’m still enjoying Warcraft and still playing with my father, which means I potentially may always have something to write about. I’ve also realized that setting myself strict goals for posting or content (see some previous year’s Blog Resolutions, haha) aren’t actually the way that I interact with this space. This is my happy place, not my job. I want to reinvent and treat it as such.

This brings me lastly for my reason for posting today. As I’ve grown older, I’ve found myself buried more and more in work and relationships and productivity. Spaces that I enjoyed for the sheer sake of fun shrink. Of the three things I claimed to love when I started this blog, writing, art, and video games, I only actively participate in one of them. Growing up means a lot of change, responsibility, and maturity for sure, but it doesn’t have to mean putting aside all the things that I love.

My New Year resolution – my personal one, not one associated specifically with the blog as I’ve done in the past – is to embrace my creative outlets more. Write a little more. Paint a little more. Sing a little more. And do these things because I want to, productivity be damned.

So yes, long story short, Growing Up in Azeroth is back! I can’t promise that I’m going to post on any predictable schedule or with any predictable content, but what I can say is I do plan on using this space once again to discuss all things World of Warcraft that I care about. I know the heyday of Warcraft blogging has likely passed (and I’m honestly not sure anyone will read this other than myself!) but I want to get this out there to the world as a promise to myself. It’s time to write for fun once again!

2018 New Year’s Resolutions

It’s been a few days since the beginning of the year (ok, perhaps more than a few) but Yotaan and Fussypants still want to sit down and go through our New Year’s Resolutions for 2018. So, without further ado, our yearly update to the Goals tab above!

Fussypants: 2017, as I have previously written about, threw a giant wrench in both my writing and WoW playing time. Because of a million different factors, both in and out of my control, I just didn’t get to dedicate as much time as I would have liked to the game. As such, I didn’t really hit as many of the items on last year’s New Year Resolutions as I planed. Last year, I vowed to…

1) Write consistently and write for myself
On the whole, I did not do a very good job of this. The year before last, I had gone the other way with this type of goal, vowing to write ‘5 blog posts a month’, which was entirely too much and led to a lot of burn out. However, as it turns out, my reactionary goal to that one didn’t do much better. Instead of being too strict, the limit I set for myself this past year was too vague and unbinding. It wasn’t quantifiable, and as a result, it fell by the way side.

Going forward, I definitely need to make sure I’m setting realistic output goals for myself. I’m a pretty deadlines oriented person (as I suspect many people are); I need that hard due date in order to motivate. While the idea of ‘writing for myself’ is a very positive one, it didn’t light the fire under my proverbial butt to go and get typing.

All of this to say, I didn’t write enough this year. I did do a pretty solid job writing for myself, but a couple of blog posts every couple of months just doesn’t cut it, both by my own personal standards and for readers. I recognize that, and I apologize for that.

I will say, there is one exception to this: NaNoWriMo. During the month of November, I managed to get out a blog post almost every single day. It was a challenge, absolutely, but it was also one of the most rewarding things I’ve done in a while. I probably don’t need to go that crazy in the future, but I’ve proven that I can do it, so I should get closer.

2) Post more stories
Alrighty well, this one should probably be chalked up to another big fat X. While I’ve written a ton of stories behind the scenes, a grand total of 0 have been posted here on the blog. However, since this goal still did get me to flex my creative muscles, I don’t think it was all failure. Now I just need to work on editing so I can actually post some of the dozens of stories I’ve written!

3) Integrate my artistic side into the blog more
While I definitely didn’t go as far as I could have, I think I could rightfully say, I did bring a bit more of my artistic side into the blog (if only in the site redesign). However, I wouldn’t disagree that there’s absolutely more I can do, and going forward, this one is definitely going to be a personal goal. Who knows, maybe I’ll be able to tie together stories with some art!

4) Complete Suramar (and whatever max level story follows it)
I have completed the Suramar storyline on two, count ’em, two characters, so I’ll definitely be putting this one in the success category! While Suramar did have it’s moments of frustration (especially on the second time through), overall, I enjoyed the zone immensely. The story was so well done and the city felt like a living, breathing place. It’s just icing on the cake that Nightborne will be playable sometime soon!

5) Participate in more community building projects
This is another one of those where I didn’t get as involved as I would have liked, but I did do a little bit. Unfortunately, both the Running of the Gnomes and the Running of the Trolls occurred when I was either out of town or otherwise unable to play. Both those events were the ones I had in mind when I wrote out this resolution, so I’m a bit bummed that I couldn’t swing by to join them. That being said, I did do a few different things that I’d say did count as community involvement. For one, I participated in the Legion Fanzine (which you can go and preorder here by the way!) as well as joining the Perky Pugs Discord (another link for you!)

Now that we’ve gone through 2017, I think it’s high time we turn to the present year. 2018. On a more real-life level, this coming year is going to hold a lot of huge changes for me, and I don’t know where that will leave my video gaming. I definitely want to keep writing and keep playing, but I truly have no idea what the future will hold, or even where in the country I’ll be living in a year’s time. The goals I come up with might turn out to be unfeasible in 6 months, or I might knock them all out of the part. We shall see!

1) Write 4 blog posts every month
A toned down version of my 2016 resolution, I’m hoping that this will keep me writing but not burn me out. And hopefully, I’ll be able to get more out than just four on some months!

2) Post the stories for my WoW characters
A hold-over from last year, I still want to get some narrative type work out here on the blog, if only so I can point to a place when people ask about my OCs!

3) Re-open my art commission business!
For those who’ve done a bit of snooping around ye olde site, you might have noticed the new tabs up above! I am really, really hoping that I will be able to re-open my art commission business this year as it was both a great challenge and a nice source of income (especially considering I’m quickly approaching the biggest financial burden of my life, haha college debts).

4) Level a Horde-side character to max
Confession time, I have not played on the red side of things in a long while. There are both friends and lore on the Horde side, and I’d like to finally reconnect with that!

5) Help out with Violet Spellwing carry runs
Whether this means to run my own or help out with others, I really want to do my part in paying it forward and helping folks get their Ahead of the Curve mounts for Heroic Argus. What was once done for me, I want to do for others.

Yotaan: For me, writing is not second nature, or even third or fourth nature! I always admire Fussypant’s interest and enthusiasm to write. Unfortunately, my writing was scant in 2017. But how did I do with my goals?

1) Play on a PvP realm.  I miss the danger.  I will need to find the best one to level up.
This one did not happen at all! While Yotaan PvPed a bunch more, it was entirely in battlegrounds. I think I did not want to start a new character from scratch that was isolated from the rest of my toons. I did start Roy, a disc priest from level 1 in the past few months, but I wanted him in OtQ. Now, as a look to the future, this goal will be unachievable, as PVP and PVE realms, as distinct entities, are going away.

2) Try again to play with Fussypants more.
Definitely achieved this one! We have leveled demonhunters a bit and PvPed a bit. She keeps trying to get me to join her raids, but I just can’t do it. Every time I tried I get sweaty and anxious!

3) Get the Mount Parade achievement
When I set this goal Yotaan was at 153 out of 200 mounts. Goal achieved! (Actually, this is a bit of a cheat, Yotaan got the achievement just a week ago.) Currently at 205 mounts and climbing. This goal was great to have since Yotaan got help. Fussypants picked up a few for the family collection and the middle-child-who-shall-not-be-named-but-is-named-Shorts got a few old school mounts.

4) Figure out Pet Battles. It’s a thing, isn’t it?
I guess it is not a thing for me. Didn’t even open the Pets tab.

5) Really enjoy my time in and out of WoW.
This was a great goal to have and to continue to have. I can honestly say I achieved it. Recently, I had an injury that caused me to be at home for a few days. Because of the nature of the injury, I was able to play WoW. I played for HOURS and HOURS. I have not sat and video gamed for that much since I was a kid. You know what? I really enjoyed my time. WoW continues to surprise me with depth and variety. I continued on storylines. I explored nook and crannies I missed previously. I enjoyed old and new stuff (except pet battles) and was able to be fully distracted from my injury – a wonderful way to spend the days recovering.

So 2017 sped by quickly, what will happen in 2018? Like Fussypants, I really wonder what is in store for the blog. She will be embarking on new challenges and I suspect will be very busy. I still want to help and contribute but I do not want her to be overwhelmed. On to my goals!

1) Work on collections
Last year I was focused on mounts, but recently I have had more interest in gear appearances. I make sure to check the mog appearance of every gear any of my toons pick up. I want that pink typography of an appearance added to my collection to pop up! What is funny about the goal is that I have very little interest in mogging myself – Yotaan always looks like a clown in whatever he picks up!

2) Keep playing with Fussypants
While this may sound like a cop-out goal, it actually might be hard to achieve in the latter half of 2018. She will be someplace else in the country and will become, for the first time, a long distance playing partner.

3) Horde time
It has been too long. I bleed red. Time for moar Horde!

4) Get better at PvP
A long time friend of ours correctly pointed out to Pants that I am very below average in PvP. It’s time to fix that. Already started on this by playing Enhance on Yotaan seriously for the first time since I began playing. Elemental has been a poor PvP choices for years.

5) Have fun
Whether this is in or out of Wow, it is important to slow down and have a good time. Often we need a reminder of this and a goal can serve this purpose. (Right Pants?)

Let’s make 2018 a great one folks!

Better Long Term Legion Goals

[Fussypants] There were a lot of failed attempts to get a new blog header photo

Battle for Azeroth is pretty far away, so we have Legion to play with for some time. Fussypants cornered me yesterday, grabbed me by the collar, tried to pick me up, and demanded I write a follow up blog post to her Legion long term goals. [Editor’s note, I did not.]  After I grounded her and banished her to her room, I decided it was a good idea!!

Long term Legion goals:

Finally get the %$# Ratstallion – I have been farming coins in that stinking sewer for months! An elemental shaman is not the best for PvP down there. I have a little less than 2000 more coins to go, so close! Hitting up the weekly quest to get 150 coins helps, but Yotaan will need to buckle down, hold his delicate panda nose, and grind coins down there.

Speaking of mounts, I hope to get up to 250 mounts collected. I am at 242 and have gotten most of the simple ones. I was very, very lucky to get the Reins of the Infinite Timereaver in WotLK timewalking last week, so cross your fingers for more lucky drops. Plus, the Pants has another sibling that occasionally plays, and that toon has been farming up some mounts as well.

PvP has been better this expansion, we’ve wrote about it before. Yotaan is all of Prestige 1 – the goal is 4 for the prestigious bronze courser mount. Stretch goal is the prestigious ivory courser mount. Fussypants is interested in artifact appearances and there are a few hiding in the Prestige ranks, but I just can’t get too excited about those.

Yotaan wants to finish some stories! From a lore perspective, I missed the part when Illidan returns – does he get rezzed, does he get put together again like humpty dumpty, does he get really angry about it? (Well, I think he never stopped being angry.) That part of the story is gated behind Mythic dungeons end bosses. You have to acquire enough bits-of-something-or-another to see the next part of the story. Yotaan is only half way thorough – not really keen on the grindy dungeon crawl so it is taking more time.

Other stories to finish is the death knight series and the demon hunter series. I haven’t gotten the class mounts or seen the resolution of either. Fussypants informs me that it is worth working for, so that is interesting to see how that plays out. Plus, we are leveling our demon hunters together and they are only 107 or so – lots more story there!

Finally, for the Horde! I have a Forsaken Rogue that is only 101 – I would like him at max level as he may become my main in BfA. I am missing playing Horde and I might be able to talk the Pants into joining the better faction…

Another other good stuff out there we missed in Legion? Let us know! I’ll go and let Pants out of her room now.

This post was written entirely by Yotaan.  Thanks Dad! ❤

Long Term Legion Goals

With all this talk of Battle for Azeroth, it’s sometimes hard to remember that we’re not even done with Legion yet! There’s still another raid tier to go, which means more months of demons, demons, and more demons. That also means there’s plenty of time to get cracking on some long term goals!

I’m not sure how you guys operate, but for me, long term goals are my bread and butter. I got the legendary cloak and ring on almost every single one of my characters back when those were in the game, not because I really wanted to kit out those characters, but because I’m a total sucker for long, drop-based quest chains like that. Even when I only get one Abrogator stone per boss. There’s just something so satisfying about ticking off a checkbox on your list. While I haven’t gotten into it as much this expansion (so little time!), the artifact quest chains are perfect for this.

I’ve focused pretty heavily on my paladin main this expansion, so most of my alts have barely been played at all. A part of me misses raiding on multiple different characters but my bigger concern here is transmog. I need to make sure I collect as many artifact appearances before they vanish forever with the end of Legion. Luckily, I’ve realized this earlier in the expansion cycle than I usually do, so I should have enough time.

Mercifully, a recent tweet by the Warcraft Devs account clarified that most artifact appearances would still be obtainable in Battle for Azeroth. However, the Mage Tower and appearance the Mythic 15 one are going to be vanishing at the end of Legion. I doubt that I’ll be able to get the Mythic appearance on many of my alts, considering my main hasn’t even gotten it yet (I might be a mythic raider, but my mythic + experience is… lacking). However, especially with the gear upgrades coming in Antorus, the Mage Tower should be totally doable.

Come to think of it, even though the other appearances won’t be removed, it would probably be a smart thing to do to knock out as many of those now as I can. I very rarely go back to old expansions to farm transmog appearances because I am rather lazy. To save Future Me a bit of hassle, I think I’ll grab as many artifact appearances now as I can.

And then there’s all the class specific storylines and mounts. I haven’t heard anything about those being removed, but I definitely want to grab those up before the expansion ends as well. The list just keeps piling up and up!

Before I add anything more to this, let’s go ahead and write down for the record all of Fussypants’ Legion Goals.

-Complete a Mythic fifteen in time (this is getting silly!)
-Finish out those last couple of world quests and dungeon bosses for my last two easily achieved artifact appearances
-Purchase the Protection and Retribution class mount
-Maybe work the the Prestige appearances?

-Balance of Power
-Mage Tower
-Class Mounts
-Maybe complete a Mythic fifteen

-Balance of Power
-Mage Tower
-Class Mounts
-Maybe complete a Mythic fifteen

Priest, Druid, Shaman, Hunter (all my invasion-leveled babies)
-Finish Class Storyline
-Balance of Power
-Mage Tower
-Class Mounts

What are your goals for the end of Legion? Any big ticket items you wanna knock out while you’ve still got time?

2017 New Year’s Resolutions


…Also known as, ‘getting back on the bandwagon’.

It’s been a while since I’ve updated the blog and for that, I owe all my readers and explanation and an apology.

My main New Year’s Resolution for 2016 was to “post a minimum of 5 blog posts a month”.  For the first half of the year, I was very good about this.  I was rocking and rolling, writing and posting prolifically.  Around about summer time, the number of posts I was putting out decreased while the length got significantly longer.  So, while I wasn’t maintaining the letter of my resolution, I maintained the spirit.

And then, my next year of school began.  When I established my resolution, I didn’t really think very far ahead.  Specifically, I didn’t take into account that 2016 would include one of my most academically rigorous years.  All of a sudden, I didn’t have very much free time.  Both my post number and post length dropped significantly.  I started feeling really guilty, like I was failing the blog.  Writing became a chore and a checklist rather than a hobby.  And as a result, even when I did find the free time, I didn’t have the motivation to write anymore.

As much as I’d like to blame this on my super busy schedule, the reality is my lack of writing was partly my fault.  I didn’t set a realistic goal and turned something I enjoyed into something I avoided.  It was a self fulfilling cycle; I didn’t write because I didn’t want to and then I felt awful about not writing, which further decreased my motivation.

Regarding my other, non-writing related resolutions, I actually faired much better.  I completed Heroic Hellfire Citadel, even going so far as to help out with Moose group carries and venture into Mythic.  I started the Ironman Challenge but didn’t get much farther than that due to Legion (it’s still on my to do list though). I did go and try out a bit of open world role play but the bigger achievement there was the writing I did associated with it.  I established backstories and wrote dozens of little vignettes for my characters. And, I completed scores of transmog sets I’d been meaning to build, thanks in part to the new transmog system.

Now that brings us to this New Year. 2017.  I still want to set goals because I know I’m a very checklist oriented person.  But I know I cannot do what I did last year.  Goals are wonderful, but so is being able to reach them.

My Resolutions for 2017

1) Write consistently and write for myself
A lot less concrete than my previous writing goals to be sure, but I hope this will bring me more success.  I do want to keep writing and keep writing all year but setting a quantitative goal hasn’t been the best way.  It’s about the quality of the writing.  For the new year, I want to make sure I write stuff that I love because I love to do it.  Not to cross off a checklist, not because I ‘need’ to, but because I ‘want’ to.

2) Post more stories
I’ve done a little of this in the past, but I really want to publish more of the short stories that I write.  Creative writing is something I don’t get to do as often but I thoroughly enjoy it.  By giving my work an audience, I think I might be inspired to write even more! And I mean, I’d love to get some of these ideas out of my head and onto a page.

3) Integrate my artistic side into the blog more
Surprise surprise, I’m actually a painter! You wouldn’t really know by reading through my blog so I’d like to change that!  Whether that be writing about my art, including my art as article headers, or maybe even doing art giveaways, I’m working on ways of bringing paint into my posts.

4) Complete Suramar (and whatever max level story follows it)
I have a confession to make: I rarely ever finish the max level stories outside of the ones told in raids.  It’s not for lack of wanting its just, when you main a healer, smacking mobs in the face takes a lot more time.  This expansion though, aided by my newfound viable holy paladin dps, I’m going to do it.  I’m going to complete Suramar and not just google the ending of the story!

5) Participate in more community building projects
There are a bunch of wonderful organizations that use WoW as a vehicle to drive positive change; Icecrown Challenge and Running of the Gnomes comes to mind immediantly but I know there are more out there.  I want to participate in as many of those as I can.  But even on a much more local level, I want to start giving back to the community.  Sending bags and gold to low level characters.  Helping new newbies find their footing. Jumping in and being that last body you need to go and run Eye of Azshara. I want to be a force of good.

Lastly, I do want to acknowledge the writing I did this past year.  While I wasn’t as prolific as I would have liked, I still wrote some pretty gosh darn good pieces if I do say so myself!

Soapbox Speech: The Truth about Leadership
A good synopsis of all of the leadership related lessons I’ve learned this year.  Also, home to one of the best lines I think I’ve ever written: “leadership is the art of knowing when to act and knowing when to ask.”

Gaining Closure
My farewell letter to my guildie Hammerstein who passed away earlier this year.  This was definitely one of the most emotional pieces I’ve written but I’m very very glad that I wrote it and I hope I’ve honored Hammer’s memory.

Official Fussypants Warcraft Movie Review!
Wow, I should really be a cinema critic! Just what the title sounds like, this is my breakdown of the strengths and weaknesses of the Warcraft movie. I was particularly proud of my ability to write a longer post and still keep it interesting and directed.

Why I Do Not Use (many) Addons
Not going to lie, I mainly wrote this post so I would have something to link every single time someone asked me to install some sort of addon I wasn’t interested in.  Luckily, I think the writing has held up pretty well and even half a year later, I’d be proud to link it!

Short Story: Trapped Part 1 and Part 2
This is definitely one of my favorite pieces that I wrote this year and it’s totally out of the style of anything else I published.  A short story about a few of my Warcraft characters (as well as one of a friend’s), I spent a very long time crafting a tale that was both entertaining and memorable.  If there’s anything you read again, I’d highly recommend this one!

So there you have it, 2016 in review.  Here’s to 2017, may the year be full of progress, success, and, of course, writing!

(Yotaan’s post should be coming Soon!)

2016 New Year’s Resolutions

WoWScrnShot_010116_172239And we are back from hiatus!

2015 is drawing to a close and once again Fussypants and Yotaan are reflecting on their resolutions of the ending year and creating new resolutions for the incoming one.

Fussypants: My resolutions were
1) Update the blog once a week for the entire year (with the exception of predetermined hiatuses)
2) Make a serious attempt at arenas
3) Tank some current raids
4) Attempt the Ironman Challenge
5) Start up RAOU again

My biggest goal of the year was definitely number one and I am proud to announce that I successfully completed this goal! While there were some close ones, Yotaan and I managed to get a blog post out for every single week of the year that we weren’t on hiatus.  Woot woot!

Resolution number two was a flop however.  I was really into PvP for a while but it petered out before I ever stepped foot into an arena.  However, the purpose of this resolution was to expand into different areas of the game and while I didn’t expand into PvP anymore, I definitely expanded way more into the social aspect of the game.  So while I didn’t succeed at the initial goal, I succeeded at the spirit of it.  Does that count?

Another point in the success column for resolution number three! While I actually never ended up tanking on my warrior, I have become quite the pocket tank on my brewmaster monk.  I’ve tanked all of Highmaul, most of Blackrock Foundry, and all of Lower Hellfire Citadel plus Xhul and Mannoroth.  And, I’ve tanked this both in guild groups and with complete strangers.  Given that a year ago, I was terrified of even tanking a dungeon, I’m really proud of my success in this area.  I’m still not 100% comfortable with tanking (and I doubt that I ever will be) but I’m worlds more confident that I was. (I’ve also tanked the Algalon encounter and while that wasn’t ‘current’ raiding, we purposefully copied the requirements of Wrath era raiding so I’m counting that too)

The Ironman Challenge has been a bit of a mixed bag for me.  I’ve totally started it I just haven’t… gotten very far yet.  I think I’m level 5? Look, it’s still a work in progress! I’m going to count this one as a success though because I have started the Challenge and there was no completion requirement in my resolution.

The last goal on my list was another flop, but not for want of trying. Unfortunately I did not get enough submissions to write up any more posts.  That’s alright though, not everything I set out to do I could have completed.

All and all, I think I did pretty well with this past year’s resolutions.  I had some flops but I also had some exceptional successes. And as I wrote a year ago “I really want to focus on blogging with regularity and trying new things in WoW” and I think I achieved the spirit of my resolutions if not every individual goal.

.Walking towards the futureLooking back over my year of blogging, I’d also like to acknowledge some of the writing I’ve done this past year.  Here are some of my favorite things I’ve written.

Beta-Testing Life through WoW ~ A very soul-baring piece about what impact WoW has had on my life as I’ve grown up.  A lot of what I wrote here still applies months later.  While it was a bit hard to write, I’m still very proud that I was able to post this

Tin Foil Hat: What is the Light? ~ A tin-foil hat, crazy person, brainstorming theory about how magic works in Azeroth.  This was the first time I’d written a speculative piece like this and I’m pleased with the results.

What’s to a name? ~ The story of how I got the name of my mage back.  I like this piece for two reasons: It involved a very awesome GM and I think what I wrote is still very applicable.

Less than Legendary ~ My opinion on the Warlord’s legendary chain.  While this piece doesn’t have as much staying power as some of the other ones I’ve written (since it’s about a specific piece of endgame content that will likely be removed) I still think it was a very strong piece.  I worked on the article for many months and I think I was able to offer a pretty complete viewpoint because of that.

Satire: Stop Catering to the Casuals Blizzard! ~ A satirical piece about Blizzard catering to the casuals in regards to twitter integration.  I really enjoyed writing this (and the later satires) since they allowed me to stretch a writing muscle I don’t usually get to use.  Also, its just entertaining to poke fun in this way.

Bonus article: Fussypants Writes a Horror Story ~ This post was completely un-WoW related but I still enjoyed writing it.  A short horror story that I wrote for a school project but decided to post on the blog.

Man, reading through all that I wrote is kinda crazy!  There’s a lot more there than I thought! And boy, do I put a lot of puns into my writing….

The last thing on my list is to set my goals for this coming year! In 2016 I want to work on writing even more for the blog and completing projects.
1) Post a minimum of 5 blog posts a month.  This should work out to be a post every week with an extra post thrown in there every couple of weeks.  More writing!
2) Complete all of Heroic Hellfire Citadel, including Archimonde to get me that sweet, sweet moose.
3) Complete the Ironman Challenge.  Whether that means I ding level 100 or I die in the process, I want to finish this!
4) Work on my roleplay character and try out some open world RP. I’ve started the toon with a friend but I’d really like to explore roleplaying more.
5) Farm up some of the various transmog sets I’ve built.  I have a bad habit of designing tons of different outfits with specific characters in mind and then never getting around to actually wearing them.  Not any more!

Screen Shot 2013-11-21 at 7.35.45 PM.Yotaan:
So my 2015 resolutions were:
1) Level Yotaan to max level while enjoying the story as he goes
2) Get the legendary ring on Yotaan
3) Play with Fussypants more often
4) I like the Ironman Challenge!
5) Help Fussypants more on her blog (not specifically writing articles, but providing other support too)

1) By far the best part of Warlords was the leveling experience from 90 to 100 and I enjoyed the story.  Yotaan did fall behind Fussypants in the progression, but I was able to follow the main story completely and enjoy the side stories as well.  I also leveled a Horde toon as well to get the Horde side.

2) Soooooo, didn’t quite make that one!   Yotaan has been collecting tomes now for about 6 months now.  He hardly raids, so it has been slow.  With Legion far off in 2016, I still think it will happen.

3) I really wanted this one to happen, but life gets busier every year.  Yotaan and Fussypants have been very occupied with RL.  However, I think the biggest reason that this resolution did not happen is raiding.  As you know, Fussypants became quite the raider this year.  Yotaan rarely raids, so these very different play styles don’t mesh well for playing together.  Hopefully, we can change this for 2016!

4) Ha!  Got Fussypants on this one!  Currently I am “winning” at the Ironman Challenge.  I say “winning” because Bullsmack, a level 21 Tauren druid, is lying facedown somewhere in Ashenvale.  He was a victim of a bad pull plus a wandering mob.  It was a great experience to have a challenge in leveling in WoW.  I was surprised at how careful you have to be.  I think we will try again once Fussypants gets her act together.

5) I did write more in 2015 than 2014 so nominally I met this resolution.  However, I can do a better job.
Overall I did not do as well as I would have likely but that’s how resolutions go.  I am very proud of how well Fussypants did!  Proud Papa!

I was inspired (Artwork by Fussypants)

(Artwork by Fussypants)

.Since we are reflecting on the past year, Fussypants ordered me to pick my favorite blog posts that I actually wrote.  Hmmmmm…

My real favorites are the ones she wrote recounting our discussions such as Another Name Article (Demon Hunter Edition) wherein I create the best name for a demon hunter ever and Next Expansion: Make it Brony wherein the family predicts the next expansion.

If I actually had to pick my own writing, then I’m picking Get Off My Virtual Lawn because it was the most honest writing I did.  Plus, it garnered some responses, which is rare for my posts.

And now, for 2016, my WoW resolutions:
1)   Play on a PvP realm.  I miss the danger.  I will need to find the best one to level up.
2)   Try again to play with Fussypants more.  This is a challenge, especially considering our play styles.
3)  Get the Mount Parade achievement.  Currently at 153 out of 200 mounts.
4)  Figure out Pet Battles.  It’s a thing, isn’t it?
5)  Really enjoy my time in and out of WoW.

Happy New Year!!

New Year’s Resolutions

WoWScrnShot_122714_194531It’s that time of year again, where foolish and pie in the sky goals are set to mark the passing of an old year into the new.  Let’s see how Fussypants and Yotaan did on last year’s resolutions and what they will pledge to do next year!

Fussypants: My goals were:
1) Get the legendary cloak! (Sucess three times over!)
2) Level my druid (Success, she’s now my PvP main)
3) Stick to one main character till max level (Success, Fussypants was the first)
4) Every mount in game (Failure, this was a pipe dream)
5) Write for the blog all year (Excepting a few unavoidable breaks, I’d call this a success!)

So I guess I did pretty good! Next year I really want to focus on blogging with regularity and trying new things in WoW, so my New Year’s Resolutions are:
1) Update the blog once a week for the entire year (with the exception of predetermined hiatuses)
2) Make a serious attempt at arenas.  I want to expand into different areas of the game.
3) Tank some current raids.  I leveled my warrior with the sole purpose of tanking, and I have yet to do that on her.
4) Attempt the Ironman Challenge! I’ve always been curious about this, and I want to actually try it.
5) Start up RAOU again! I really enjoyed doing that, and I want to bring the column back

Yotaan: My goals were:
1) Beat Fussypants in getting the legendary cloak!  (I was way ahead of her, but she beat me 2 times over!)
2) Play more WoW (yup, that happened alright)
3) Find all the rares in archeology on my dwarf monk (actually got pretty far but ran out of steam)
4) Get more reps up on Yotaan, he’s the toon with the most exalted reputations.  (cleared a bunch, but not all of them, still Yotaan is still the toon with the most reps)
5) Write more in this blog.  Fussypants has offered her views often, and it’s time for more contributions from a father’s perspective. (Well, not so good on this one.  I did do one or two on my own, but we all know that Fussypants is the star of the show!)

Okay, maybe more reachable goals are in order this year:
1) Level Yotaan to max level while enjoying the story as he goes (that may be more relaxing too)
2) Get the legendary ring on Yotaan (boy, that will take forever!)
3) Play with Fussypants more often (we’ve been doing things independently a lot lately)
4) I like the Ironman Challenge!  (I am happy to steal ideas.)
5) Help Fussypants more on her blog (not specifically writing articles, but providing other support too)

What are your New Years Resolutions?

Garrosh AotC Achieved!

WoWScrnShot_101214_221759Today, I shall tell you a tale.  It is a tale of adventure, of perseverance, of patience, and eventually, of victory.  In this tale, you shall find both the noblest of hearts and the rudest of trolls.  For this is the tale of how I got my Ahead of the Curve Garrosh kill.

The story starts as most do, with a villain and a problem. The villain clear but the problem harder to solve.  Garrosh Hellscream, Warchief of the Horde, had to fall on Normal Difficulty but he had to fall soon.  Very soon, as in within-a-few-months soon.  But how could this happen?

Now enters our protagonist, an earnest but under geared disc/shadow priest.  Me.  I made my goal to defeat Garrosh before the Great Patch Drop… but how?  What follows is a three month long journey, leading up to the final showdown.

The first step was gearing up.  Weeks were spent gearing up in flex.  This part was easiest.  Groups formed quickly and often, and with flexible sizes, many could come along.  I healed for the most part, occasionally dpsing, and all the while building up gear.  Times were good, and people friendly.  I developed a keen knowledge on the boss fights and my abilities.

Then came the next step; normal raids.  At first times were good.  The raids were harder, yes, but not impossible.  Success and gear flowed freely.  Groups were friendly for the most part, and I felt pretty confident about my abilities.  My item level rose, and I climbed higher into the normal raids.  Then, the dark times fell.

Patch Day was drawing closer, and people were becoming more desperate.  Joining groups became much harder, as most were looking for carries not runs.  People became more kick-happy and rude, and I often found myself the scapegoat.  Impatience became the new norm, and generosity fell off the wayside.

The tipping point came during a raid that could have ended it all.  I had made it into a Garrosh Normal, and was clearing the trash with the group.  I could tell right away that the other healer was far better geared than me, and I took it as a good omen.  I might get this!  We continued on, eventually getting to Garrosh.

The first pull was… rough.  Many people died to avoidable mechanics, and the tank foolishly perished to Iron Star.  We rezzed up, and started again.  Again, people were taking unnecessary damage.  The other healer was blowing me out of the water, but even still we were struggling to keep up.  A botched intermission later, and we wiped.  This time however, blame had to be assigned.  Fingers first pointed to the lowest dps, who were quickly kicked.  Then, the blame turned to me.  The other healer and the tank insulted me, as if I weren’t even there.  I was called many things, among them a bad excuse of a healer and a person.  And before I could speak a word, I was kicked.

I was rattled.  I was upset.  I was put down.  Confidence deeply shaken, I nonetheless queued right back up.  But my heart wasn’t into it.  I logged off, and the quest came to a halt.

A week passed, and precious time slipped away.  Still, I couldn’t bring myself to restart the quest.  I didn’t want to go through that again.

But a quest of such epic proportions couldn’t be ignored for so long.  Within the next week, and good friend of mine told me that he had gotten his kill, and generously offered to pay for a carry for mine.  I was motivated.  Due to timing, I was unable to attend the carry (don’t worry, my friend didn’t pay, and I had planned to pay him back anyways), but I was dead set on getting a kill of my own.

To Twitter I turned, pursing any and all opportunities.  To Other Raids I returned, ruthless in my attempt to join any normals.  To the blog I asked, writing up a few articles on the matter.

First success came with Other Raids.  I joined a group that was basically a carry.  A heroically geared tank and a few dps pulled us from Nazgrim all the way to Paragons in an hour.  I unfortunately had to leave, but now I had a valuable lockout.

Next success came from Twitter.  Several generous Twitter denizens offered to bring me along with their raids, and I beginning to feel more confident.  I had two opportunities set.  I was ready.

The last success came from a commenter on the blog.  Khizzara charitably offered her services as a Heroic geared resto druid.  The offer was just too good to pass up, so as soon as I could I sent her an email.

One of the Twitter raids fell through, but thankfully Khizzara was free and available to help.  The details decided; Sunday night, Garrosh would fall.

Khizzara, (who shall from this point forwards be known as the hero), was in a heroic raiding guild.  This proved to be invaluable, as she was able to convince her raiding buddies to come along and help.  Well geared tanks, heals and dps joined in, and among them a very special warrior.

It turns out that Khizzara knew the one and only Garrosh Hellscream from Warchief Command Board.  Yes, that one.  The famous one.  So, on top of getting to raid with heroic raiders, I got to talk to a celebrity in the WoW blogosphere.  It was pretty freaking epic.

Thanks to my valuable lockout, we jumped in right away on Paragons.  The Klaxxi fell swiftly, and before long, we were working our way through the Garrosh trash.  And then, within a half hour of starting time, we were there.  At the doorstep of destiny.  On the edge of glory. At the final battle of good and evil.

As well geared as my allies were, we were all out of practice.  Some mistakes were made, many silences were missed, and unfortunately many wipes were had.  But every time, we picked our selves up, and went back at it.  We would bring down Garrosh if it was the last thing we did.

A few hours passed, and it was decided that this would be our last attempt.  We hitched up our belts, straightened our weapons, and charged in once again.  The battle was epic, the silences perfect, the intermissions flawless, everything went beautifully.  On the last attempt of the night,
Garrosh Hellscream, Warchief of the Horde, Final boss of MoP,
(and there was much rejoicing).
And what is the moral of the tale you ask?  Perseverance, my friends, perseverance.  If you want something, you have to go get it.  Everything requires work, otherwise it isn’t worth as much.  I spent MONTHS training, gearing, attempting this kill, and it was absolutely worth it.  Do I deserve it? Honestly, I’d say yes!  I put in the effort, I kept with it, I tried my darnedest, and eventually I got it!

But not without help!  I want to give a HUGE HUGE HUGE thanks to these people! Without you, I could have never gotten this! I am eternally grateful to you guys for giving up a night to help me with this! You are the reason why I love this game, and why I continue to play.  YOU GUYS ROCK!
Khizzara (who has a blog and you should check it out!)
And all the folks from That Guild! I cannot express in words how thankful I am!!  Mists of Pandaria goal achieved!!

AotC Garrosh Achieve


Pre Patch Panic

Life Aggro
Between school (5 hours of homework each night!), getting sick, and a super secret project coming Soon™ (ooh, cryptic messages), Fussypants and Yotaan have had almost no time to blog, and even less to play WoW.  Never fear, we are hoping back onto that blogging train, and just in time because 6.0 is on the horizon.

Fussypants: I was doing what typical Fussypants’s do when there is not much coming in WoW; meandering through normals, slowly gearing up, smelling the roses and all that.  And then BAM! Patch 6.0.2 PTR NOW LIVE!

Uh oh.  I need to get moving!  I have a bajillion things I need to do before that patch drops!!
For instance, I want to
⦁    Kill Normal Garrosh for the Ahead of the Curve achievement!  This is an almost obsession, and I’ve been pugging frantically in an attempt to get this
⦁    Get all the Proving Grounds achievements I can, many which will turn into Feats of Strength
⦁    Finally finish up Hexos in the Brawlers Guild (I’ve been stuck on him for MONTHS guys)
⦁    Perhaps get some Challenge Mode dungeons done?
⦁    Kill Ra-Den for the Achievement, which will also become a Feat of Strength
⦁    Get my warrior to 90, she’s kinda stalled out at 80 right now
⦁    Legendary Cloak on my druid if I can
⦁    Start running flex raids with my guild again
⦁    Get at least one heirloom from Garrosh
⦁    Possibly try out RP? Maybe? How does one do that?
⦁    Decide on a main for WoD
⦁    Do stuff on this list!

So yeah, that’s a long list! And I’ve got two weeks to a month at best.  And school is ramping up hardcore. Yikes!

Yotaan: I have been not only busy but I have been distracted by Hearthstone.  Deathrattle Priest for the win! I do have a few things I want to accomplish before the patch drops:
⦁    GREEN FIRE!!!!  I got the legendary cloak on my warlock, so I hope I can handle the scenario questy thing.  I’ll get a cool title too.
⦁    Help Fussypants get her normal Garrosh kill.  I really hope she gets it!  (of course an heirloom for us to share would be nice too.)
⦁    Well, that’s pretty much it actually…

What are all your prepatch panics?

A… Second? Legendary Update

My *second* legendary
So, umm, yeah.  I seem to have gotten a second legendary cloak.  Call me crazy, but I’m glad I did it.  I finally feel like I can flex raid sufficiently on this character now! As you can see, I got a little dressed up for this occasion this time.
With this recent acquisition, I have now completed my stretch goal.  No, actually, my stretch-stretch-stretch goal.  To be honest, I did not think I would ever get this thing.  Because of this, I now need a new goal to keep me occupied (I am a very goal oriented person, ok??).  After some deliberation and decision-making, I have decided to make it my goal to completely max out my main character.  Full exalted reputations, maxed out professions, the whole shi-bang.  Like my previous stretch goal, this one (hopefully) won’t happen for a long while.
On top of that, I have been given the opportunity to raid with some twitter celebrities (ok, not personally, but still!).  Unfortunately, they are a horde guild, so I need to get up my blood elf priest’s ilvl up fast.  At this point, she is at 503, but I’m aiming to get to 530 if possible.  I also need some advice from you, the readers!

  1. What is the fastest way to get a dirt-poor, isolated alt’s ilvl up to 530?
  2. Currently, I am holy specced, but should I go disc? Is it significantly better?
  3. How can I gem/enchant said dirt-poor isolated alt properly??

As always, big thanks for the help!
Addendum:  What are you guys doing to keep yourself interest in WoW?