At least a few upgrades

Last week I was finally able to purchase the third t12 item, and I decided to craft the 365 weapons rather than waiting for either a price drop, or a totally lucky drop in Firelands. It feels good to have some upgrades.

It took me a long time to get the third t12 item, and I worked hard for it – was it casual? Yup. But you can get stuffed if you think it didn’t take a very long time. I’m not the best geared in my guild at all, but considering that I have never had a raid upgrade in Firelands, and have barely stepped in there, being around position 12 to 14 on the guild list is a small achievement.

Today I read news that the t13 items will not be available for purchase with Valor, but other gear will be. Initially I was totally disenfranchised by this. I think this is OK as long as the gear is almost the same as the tier gear. A tad less powerful is fine (eg. missing a Tier set bonus), but if the items are no more powerful than the 5 man rewards, then I will not be grinding Valor at all – and cannot see a reason to do the 5 mans beyond the basic gear-ups.

That will have a drastic affect on the tank population, and the amount of players we’ll see – so much so that I doubt it is even plausible for the Valor gear not to be almost as good. Not granting t13 rewards makes having those items more special, and I like that. If you are a raider and you got lucky enough to get them, then kudos. Just don’t penalise my role in the raid because I’ve geared a few items using Valor. That would be stupid.

So what does this all mean? It means I’m watching closing the announcements for gear as part of 4.3. Very closely.

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Mort’s new Drake of the West Wind

One of the few things I like in game which is not strictly an advantage or with a great purpose is having some of the groovy mounts. I’m not a mount collector by any means, but there are a few I have that I really like.

The Drake of the West Wind

The Drake of the West Wind is a nice looking dragon – and well worth the time and grind. I may even continue to do the daily quests.

Oh no, not again.

Seems that Ret Paladin are getting the nurf that the forums cried out for. And I don’t mean an adjustment, or a conservative change, or a series of tweaks. Its a fully blooded destruction of the class that reached beyond Ret pvp (where there were major issues), beyond Ret pve raiding (where there were adjustments needed), and right into Prot tanking (which was just getting good), and into Holy (which needed a dps boost).

Its right back to Blizzard saying they think they know where the class is going, and has a vision for it. Sure, I see your vision:

– Ret: melee dps without snare, cc, intercept, or flee abilities. Fun? maybe.

– Prot: tanking was really good, but being still grounded in abilities that are affected by every other spec change means that there is potential for damage to Prot in every other change. And then boosting aoe tanking of other classes (which needed it), and adding a new class to tank. Right, so who is looking for a Paladin tank when the other tanks are around?

– Holy: being a good single target healer. Same old story.

WoW Insider has a good post about this.

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Confused about pvp

Essential reading for us clueless pvp players.

Essential reading for us clueless pvp players.

I need some help understanding pvp. /confused

My questions for the uber-gankers out there:

– Which rewards from the battlegrounds are the must haves for pve toons?

– Is there even a hard rule?

– Why is it even acceptable to have rewards that are good pve options in pvp, which are not also “solo grind-able” in pve?

– Do you think the gear quality will continue in the next expansion, so that pvp for pve continues to be a viable upgrade path?

You see I’m an old grumpy bastard, who used to think he was good at first person shooters when Quake 2 and Unreal Tournament were new. That was pvp in no uncertain terms. For a while I learnt maps, played a lot, and had a machine that made other gamers cry. I pwned before the concept of tea-bagging was popular.

Over time my attention for fast twitch games waned, my reflexes slowed, and I didn’t give much thought to pvp like activities. Then I started playing wow, and the idea of killing others in a somewhat fair competition was again an option. It wasn’t immediately exciting, and being on a pve server I chose not to do PvP. I figured I leave it to the kids, they’ll get excited about it, and stay out of my pugs.

But now I see pvp gear that would be very handy as pve rewards, and I’m told that pvp is not too hard and all you need to do is grind out the time. Battlegrounds especially are highlighted as a domain of severe disparity between the can’s and the can-nots, but if you’re killing to die over and over, you can get the gear. I was also warned that the time sink is huge to get the valuable gear.

To qualify this I started grinding BG Honor to get a Paladin main weapon upgrade. A prot pally with some resilience gear seems darn hard to kill (insert cockroach joke by BRK), but altogether useless at anything but defense. I have literally announced the incoming attack by 3 goons, and survived the time it took my comrades to run from the other side of the EotS map to defend the node. Then the screen cleared I was still standing on our node.

A typical pvp game for my pally is:
/Say “I’ll sit on MageTower, and yell when they’re inc.”
/cast rank 1 Consecrate
..wait..
/cast Perception
..wait..
[repeat till in combat, overwhelmed, or sap’ed]

Arena seems like a hot blooded gank fest. I have no doubt that it takes extreme amounts of skill and effort to get to the top ranks, and that you need to be devoted/organised to get the anywhere close to the top gear. Meh, I’m casual by choice as well as circumstance and a 3 minute death parade holds no value.

Battlegrounds appear to have a tad more story and strategy, but I can’t get a real picture on what roles to do, or what strategies are valid. If these strategies exist, then why are they not followed? That would be like trying to do a pve boss with a totally inappropriate group. Just silly.

Zone pvp seems the most natural expression of pvp, and indeed the most logical. A contested area that can be controlled and defended by the players in the area at the time is a great concept. But the it is very difficult to balance the needs of the pve levelers and the pvp zone players.

For now my plan is to ignore the logic, and sit in BGs till I have enough honor for my upgrade. Ignore the boredom, ignore the fools, and ignore the afk players. It seems a poor way to play, but the rewards are otherwise achievable.

Trying out a PvP 2v2 Team

With much trepidation I joined a WoW 2v2 Arena team created by a few guildies. Our goal (much like many of the new teams) is to get just enough points to get some of the great gear.

This was my first time in there, and we got spanked every time. Perhaps the team combo of a Priest and Warlock is not ideal, and I have a feeling that you need a CC such as a Rogue to really have a good game. Warriors and Hunters also have fear prevention now too, so its getting to be that all I do is DoT and die.

Oh well, somebody on the Horde side will be enjoying a quick gank, and we’ll get some points along the way.

Team name: Bad BuZZ – and I have no idea what it means, only that its not a drug thing.