Northrend and beyond

28 06 2010

I wrote a quick update a while ago mentioning that I had just hit level 70 with my (not so) new Ret Paladin in WOW. Well time has moved on since then and so have Curadane and I.

I have now said good bye to outland and have ventured off bravely into the freezing wastes of Northrend.

7 levels later and I feel like I have seen enough of the continent to put my two pennies in.

Overall I am really impressed; there is a sense of scale to the continent that makes it seem as if a mere ten levels of questing and grinding just isn’t enough to see it all. I know some people like to rag on sandbox games and MMO’s because there is just too much scope for going off and doing basically not very much in order to explore huge sections of map but I like it.

If I am going to go to the bother of controlling a virtual person in a made up world I at least want that world to seem like a place worth visiting, both in terms of places to go and things to do.

There is no point putting a serious investment of time (and wow is a serious timesink) into a game if you can trot across the whole map in five minutes and keep revisiting the sae half dozen or so locations to speak to the same couple of dozen protagonists.

Another thing which pleased me about WOTLK in general and Northrend in particular is the graphics, now granted as a long time LOTRO player they aren’t really anything to write home about however I do think they are a big step up from Vanilla WOW or The Burning Crusade. One of the main reasons that I prefer the graphics in WOTLK is that they are less cartoony than many of the graphics in TBC. I know the reasoning behind it and agree that it suited that particular expansion but personally they just weren’t my cup of tea.

The quests and dungeons all seem well thought through and there are some interesting new tweaks that help to keep things fresh, even if some of them are a little gimmicky (I’m thinking of the harpoon guns in Utgarde Pinnacle) but there is definitely something fun about driving round in a siege engine as part of Wintergrasp PvP or  flying a war dragon around as part of the Occulus instance.

So the not so good things….

I’m not sure on Death Knights, I wrote at some length before about my issues with DKs and I’m sorry ot say that having now spent a few more weeks grouping with them my initial opinions haven’t changed.

I think that a big part of the DK problem is that even by the time you are playing through Halls of Stone, The Nexus etc etc they just don’t seem to have really learnt their class….at all.

There is a long list of issues that I have regularly come across and it seems I am not alone a lot of other players are also complaining about these and others:

Tanking in all DPS gear – Just because it is plate it doesn’t mean you should tank with it!!

Hoping that DPS alone will generate enough threat for you to be able to hold a room full of mobs – fail in anyone’s language

Not using Frost presence when tanking….seriously wtf?

Oh yeah and my favourite the shitty fairy at the top of the Death Knoob tree, the cherry on top of the liquishit cake you so freely share around…..

After a wipe on halls of lightning, Utgarde Pinnacle etc “Soz guys my 1st time tanking roflol”….Well thanks a lot, thanks for fucking up the one instance run a night that I might get on an instance I actually need to do, thanks for the half the group (usually including a pissed off healer) dropping as soon as this utterance leaves your lips and lets not forget the 10g minimum that you have just cost me in having to go repair my sorry plate wearing ass.

Ok calm, down deep breaths, DK rant over.

I also dislike the 1k gold it costs for cold weather flying, just seems like a money sink but hey thats life. Personally I never rock less than 4/5k gold at any given time so dont mind paying it, but there are a lot of players who will spend whole weeks farming just to hit that 1k or alternately will decide to contact their friendly neighbourhood Chinese gold farmer in order to puke up some of their hard earned cash.

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Pugtastic, or why I hate random groups

2 04 2010

I have written recently about my return to playing world of warcraft and about my struggle to find a class that I wanted to play, eventually settling on a Ret Pally.

Well things have been ticking along quite nicely for Curadane and , I have cut a swath of destruction through Eversong Woods and the Ghostlands and have now made my way through to  Durotar.

I was sitting at level 22 so thought that I would have a look at the dungeon finder and have a quick spin through Rage Fire Chasm and some of the other lower level dungeons.

I must say I was quite impressed with the dungeon finder, I specified what dungeons I was interested in and said that I would be happy to play as a tank or a healer and literally 1 or 2 minutes later there I was in RFC.

However this is where my pleasure ended.

In hindsight I should have listened to my instincts and stayed away from PUGs  like they were carrying rabies.

Everything went badly, we had a hunter who couldn’t control his pet at all and as such kept pulling every mob within sight back to the party, we had a priest who walked off to get a sandwich leaving us without any heals (I was tanking at the time),  we had ninja raiders who were needing anything and everything that dropped and then quitting out of the instance.

I thought that maybe I was being uncharitable and that perhaps RFC wasn’t the best instance to base things on, so it was off to Shadowfang Keep to see if that would do anything to change my mind… to cut a long story short it didn’t, I played with 3 separate groups and all of them were as flawed as one another.

This poses me with a little bit of problem; as I choose to play on Boulderfist there are a disproportionately more lower level players and also less guilds, so the chances to finding a guild I like, with players that are around my level and yet experienced enough to be decent are quite slim.

So my question is this: do I keep trying to do the right thing and play fairly and with integrity and just suck it up that the majority of groups are going to be pugs and are going to suck balls… OR do I decide to let loose and indulge the little bit of me that wishes I was the ninja raider or the player who joins a group completes the quest they want to do and then heads to the hills leaving people in the lurch.

I don’t think I have much of a choice really, I know what I think of the second type of player, so I will soldier on being nice and fair to one and all.

Still doesn’t change the fact that pugs are awful though.








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