Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Achieving the Impossible

When I started leveling Tal, I thought for a moment about trying to get him all the way to level 85 without dying. That thought lasted until I got to Orgrimmar, wandered around a bit, and said, "Oh, hey, there's Gammon!"

A stray click later, and my thoughts of making it to 85 without dying were shown to be... somewhat overly ambitious.

Which led me to think, "Oh, wow. Too bad. They should add an achievement for making it to 85 without dying!"

... which, in turn, led me to think, "Hmm. Are there any achievement - aside from feats of strength - that you can lock yourself out of completing?"

An achievement for hitting 85 without dying would meet this criteria. Run into Hogger? Smish! No way possible to get that particular achievement. Another example would be a "run dungeon X at less than level Y". Which would be an interesting indication that you've done something challenging... except that once you hit level Y, that's it - the achievement isn't possible for that character any longer.

After spending a furious 15 seconds thinking about it, I'm pretty sure the answer is "no" - there aren't any regular achievements that you can't complete, eventually, on any character you might want to do them on. Which is pretty darn impressive, if you ask me. If there's a non-FoS achievement in the game, you can get it, period. It might take you forever and a day to level to the point where you can run that dungeon, or fish up Mr. Pinchy, or farm up that last pet, or win enough BGs to get that mount... but that's it. With enough effort and/or assistance, you can acquire any regular achievement in game.

Am I wrong here, though? I know about quite a few of the achievements, and while I'm pretty sure that I've looked them all over at least once or twice, I may have missed something.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Another day, another level. Or two. Maybe three.

The climb continues. Talaesin is level 25, still with a good chunk of change to his name - though a bunch of that got blown on his first set of glyphs. Even more would have gone for bags, but there were no netherweave bags on the auction house! Thankfully, my guild leader on SC was kind enough to crank out some bolts and whip up some bags Real Quick Now.

It's nice, having friends. As an aside, this is actually the first time that I think I'll be able to thank someone, face-to-face, for something they did in WoW. Nice.

I was truly and honestly amazed that I couldn't find any netherweave bags on the SC Horde AH. Over on Kirin Tor, they're enough of a money making staple for tailors that I was able to make a good bit of change off of them on Laenshield, and I wasn't really even trying to do more than get a small piece of the market. Makes me wonder what other markets might be under-represented on SC. I'll have to see if there's a money-making niche that I can slot Tal into when he gets tired of raking in cash from his gathering professions.

My wife and I are having a siege* of children over tonight for a cookout, so the chances of me getting any significant play time is slim. What time I have will probably be spent on Aetherna, exploring the new Firelands content and dailies. Or... maybe not. Maybe I'll level Tal a bit while waiting for the chaos around the 4.2 changes to settle down a bit.]

* As a friend once pointed out... "A herd of cows, a school of fish, a siege of children."

Monday, June 27, 2011

Step by Step

Talaesin is level 22 now, with a nice bankroll for that level - 280 gold, IIRC. At this rate, I expect to have more than enough cash to handle dual spec, riding, mounts, and whatever else I may need as part of the game. Current bag set (a bunch of 8-slot bags) are serving him well enough, though I expect to burn some of that gold on a set of netherweave bags sometime Real Soon Now.

Got to kill my first gnomes in Azhara, and it was surprisingly refreshing.

Don't know how I'll handle facing my first Ironforge Dwarf, though. I may just have to see if I can manage to level without touching a hair on their precious little ale-soaked heads.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Myra Tyrngaarde

Talaesin is level 16 now, with 47 gold on hand. Dual gathering professions FTW! Leveling without heirloom items is surprisingly sedate, especially compared to the blistering pace that Aretae managed.

My overall impression so far (with a sample size of "one") is that the new starting areas are well done, various complaints (leveling speed, expensive bags, etc.) have been addressed fairly effectively, and that the "new player" leveling grind is much less grindy, without being to much less grindy, if you know what I mean. Playing for an hour on a low-level toon and picking up a level or two feels just about right to me.

Eye candy time.

I came across this very awesome fan art of Myra Tyrngaarde, the Ironforge bread vendor. Yeah, I loves me th' Dwarves. Click to embiggen...

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Two Weeks

Wow. Two weeks without a blog post.

Welcome to the lazy days of summer, I guess.

Aretae has managed to make it all the way to 85, and has been... well, not happily - more like reignedly - farming whiptail in Uldum and cranking out various forms of Darkmoon fair card decks for Aeth. It's a nice, sedate, mind-soothing routine. I'm sure he consoles himself with the thought that he'll eventually get to venture into the Blackrock Depths and murder everything that moves.

I've also embarked on a new adventure (for me, at least). A group of folks here at work play Horde-side on the Scarlet Crusade server. I've always wanted to see what the game looked like to the Horde, so Tuesday I logged in and lo! - Talaesin, the Tauren Shaman was born. An hour of play on Tuesday got him to level 7 with a purse full of 22 silver. Another couple of hours on Wednesday saw him just shy of level 13, with a full compliment of (small) bags, two bank slots, and a purse full of 22 gold. Dual gathering professions and the auction house, boo-yeah!

Yep. 100x increase in wealth overnight. I don't think I can keep that up, but I intend to try.

Leveling in Mulgore was interesting. I like the Tauren. I mean, giant anthropomorphic cows! What's not to like, there? And with Cata, you get the feeling that of all the Horde races, the Tauren and the Trolls are the ones who actually have their heads screwed on straight. Playing a shaman is new for me as well, so I'm getting a three-fer - new race, new class, new quests. Essentially a whole new game with a whole new group of people.


I mentioned bags, above. Up through Wrath, bag space was a major pain. First thing I did with any alt was have Aeth buy and mail them a passel of netherweave bags. The alternative was wandering around with only your 16-slot backpack for 20 levels or so until you managed to pry a bag or two out of the cold, dead hands of some random enemy, or some quest giver grudgingly coughed up an 8-slot bag after you saved his life and livelyhood. Given the way bags worked prior to Cata, you'd think they were made of woven gold or something.


By the time I hit level 10 on Talaesin, all my bag slots were filled... without me trying. Sure, they were all 6-slot bags, but that gave me a total of 40 bag slots. More than enough for the questing and gathering I was doing. Two of the bags came from rare mobs that I encountered during the course of my questing, and one just... well, just kind of showed up from somewhere. I looked, and it was there. It was automatically equipped when I looted it because I had an empty bag slot.

It looks like the main purpose of Snagglespear, "Pokey" Thonmantle and other low-level rare mobs is to be a sort of walking, hostile vending machine for small bags. Beat on the squishy pinata and voila! - out comes a bag.

I like it.

Now, though, it's time for Talaesin to venture out into the wild lands outside of Mulgore. I'm looking forward to seeing what's in store for my psycho cow. Pyschow?

We'll see.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Pushing towards 85

I'm working my way through Vash'jir on Aretae, and frankly, I'm surprised that I've come this far.

My original plan was to just level Aretae far enough to farm junk boxes so I could use them to grind out Ravenholdt rep for Aetherna's Insane in the Membrane achievement. Since I didn't have a character with inscription to help with the Darkmoon Faire reputation grind, I figured that I'd go ahead and make him a scribe as well, and so kill two birds with one stone.

So, yeah... get him to level 75, level up Inscription until I could crank out Darkmoon cards of destruction, and that would be it, right?

So. Why do I find myself under the sea, running around and leveling all the way to 82, with level 85 fast approaching?


Being sneaky is fun.

I can't see myself taking Aretae into any PvE content, unless it's as part of a guild run with folks who are willing to put up with my absolute n00bness. I've really got no interest in a combat or assassination spec, so he's going to stay subtlety for a good long while. Given that, I think he's always going to be a lone wolf type (how appropriate!) - but there's a lot for a lone wolf to do at level 85. Like, maybe hang out in Tol Barad and stun-lock healers.

Maybe. Like I said, being sneaky is fun.

Music Monday: "Let me go, boys; let me go, boys; let me go down in the mud where the rivers all run dry..."