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WoW diary
Bar Harbor
alexx_kay
Warcraft Diary
I've officially abandoned the Scarlet Crusade server, and moved Rumpelstilt back to Llane. Hopefully, with just two servers in my 'active' pile, I can spend more time in the social side of the game.

Speaking of which, I had an interesting guild experience with Implaq last night. She had a multi-part Warrior quest, one part of which was located inside Razorfen Kraul. Noticing that Kafsha was online and nearby, she asked for help getting the widget. It was *meant* to be a simple quick in-and-out job...

For one thing, our party configuration was very atypical. We went into a ~L30 dungeon with a L27 Fighter and a L59 Hunter. Implaq is used to tanking, Kafsha is used to trying to *minimize* aggro generation. But in this pairing, we had to swap our traditional roles. I got killed several times before I realized that I had to swallow my pride and let K and her kittycat do pretty much all of the fighting. Once I started sticking to back-seat navigation, we moved much quicker.

Oh yes, navigation. RFK is a freakin' labyrinth. It's not quite as bad as furbolg architecture, but it comes close. I have an addon which displays maps of dungeons, along with points of interest clearly marked -- and we *still* got lost several times. The 2D map is not so good at showing the 3D space that this instance occupies.

First we took the western path, but it soon seemed to dead-end at a cliff that I didn't think it would be wise to jump down. So we doubled back and took the eastern path. After a long series of battles, we approached our destination -- only to find a barricade between us and it. We tried going around north, but that soon seemed futile. We were going to head back for the entrance, when Kafsha fell off a ledge into a trench. Implaq, perforce, followed. We explored that trench quite thoroughly (we thought), only to find no way *out* of it.

At the far end of the trench, there was a lost goblin who wanted escort out of the dungeon. On the one hand, we were dubious because escort quests often turn out to be very deadly. On the other hand, maybe following this guy could show *us* the way out! (I wonder if they put him there explicitly for that reason?) K had cleared out all the ambient mobs in the trench already during our explorations, so we just had a few scripted ambushes to deal with, none very troublesome. Near the end of it, the goblin started climbing up one of those giant thorn vines! I had been mentally tuning those out as 'background scenery', but some of them are actually ramps in disguise. And that apparent dead end at the back of the initial western path had just such a vine growing across it.

So once the gobby was safely brought to the entrance, we headed over the western vine, and shortly thereafter discovered the Vial of Phlogiston that I had been seeking. If I had known what I was doing in the first place, this *would* have been a quick in-and-out mission. On the other hand, K and I had fun, and learned some new stuff. And Implaq got nearly a full level of experience out of the deal.

After some more adventuring in Hillsbrad, Implaq dinged 29. She now has all the parts to complete the Warrior quest. I hope the reward is juicy!

---

Ok, that reward was fairly juicy. And it led to a bunch of other quests which also seem to have good rewards. On the other hand, they also involve serious 'Grand Tour' behavior. A Horde Warrior at level 30 is expected to go to pretty much *every* level-approrpiate zone. Including the frickin' *Wetlands*, of all places. The only ways for a Horde character to even *get* to the Wetlands involve going through higher-level zones; I took the relatively safer route through Arathi Highlands, which was only mildly dangerous. It was still quite the lengthy jog, and involved lots of running away from level me+5 giant spiders.

Meanwhile, I've started actually playing with Rumpelstilt some more, now that he's back on Llane. I had forgotten just how *fast* a Fire Mage can kill things. Of course, he *has* to kill them fast, or he's toast himself.

He's currently grinding rep for Aldor, though he's thinking of switching to Netherwing after the next breakpoint. On the one hand, the reward at the end of the Netherwing quest line is merely cosmetic. On the other hand, that reward is a flying dragon mount, which is pretty frickin' sweet.

---

Got a lot of WoW in last weekend. I'm definitely back into it in a big way.

Implaq dinged 31, and finished off the last of the L30 Warrior quests. She has a new one rated at L40 that looks to be another world tour, but one she won't start on for a few more levels.

Adventuring in Hillsbrad, she ran into an unusual thing -- a high level Alliance griefer. WoW is sufficiently well-designed that there were severe limits to his effectiveness, but he still got a lot of people killed, including me once. He had his PvP flag on, and would hang around next to any adventuring Hordies. Any that were foolish enough to use multi-targeted abilities would damage him, setting their PvP flag, and he would then swiftly kill them. This added an unusual sort of challenge, but not one that ruined the game experience, luckily.

Meanwhile, I have started leveling Marfisa, my BE Pally, once again. She just hit 20, and it won't be too long before she's out of the Ghostlands and adventuring in the world at large.

Implaq's Blacksmithing has mostly finished out the Bronze Age and is entering Iron. She is looking forward to mining Gold, having recently run across 2 gold nodes while a mere handful of Mining points away from being able to use them. She has the skill now, and is eagerly awating the next such find. Marfisa's Jewelcrafting, meanwhile is just *entering* the Bronze Age. I may have Implaq start sending her excess ore that she comes across.

Rumpelstilt continues working on Aldor rep. On Sunday, he took a break from that to join a group attempting Botanica, a nearby instance which he had never done and had a quest for. The quest was finished with the first boss, which was lucky, since the second boss completely stymied us. Only one player seemed to have a clue how to defeat her, and he wasn't a native english speaker. After our third or fourth failed attempt, I went to WoWWiki to try and figure out what we were doing wrong, but the group disintegrated soon after. Maybe I should get better at some of the 'earlier' dungeons before attempting one this complex...

--

Patch 2.2 is live, bringing all sorts of changes. First up is integrated voice chat. I'll be stopping by a Radio Shack on the way home to get a cheapie headset. Hopefully, I will get to hear rickthefightguy's voice more often this way, without the bother and expense of long distance phone calls.

This patch also increases the rate of reputation gain on many factions that were once end-game content, but were made much less so by Burning Crusade. Rumpelstilt is now tempted to head back to the Plaguelands, as he still has some group quests there, and there's liable to be a brief burst of high traffic in the area. And I've only done about half of one instance there, out of the three I know of in the area. Wouldn't be very impressive loot-wise, but would be fun seeing content that I 'skipped over' earlier.

And Elizia, my 55 Druid who I haven't played in weeks, is now tempted to hit Felwood and Winterspring. Being aware of this upcoming patch, she was holding off, so as not to 'waste' any Timbermaw reputation gains.

Yes, I'm a hopeless min-maxer. I can hardly bear to play with a character who isn't getting bonus Rest XP. This is part of the reason I have as many alts as I do.

---

Feh. I go out and buy a shiny new headset, only to discover that Voice Chat isn't *really* live just yet. Ah hates me delayed gratification, ah do.

---

Well, Rumpelstilt flew to Eastern Plaguelands, but found it largely deserted. A /who command showed a mere four other players there, all in their mid-50s. Back to Outland, at least for the time being.

While grinding Aldor rep, Rumpel has picked up lots of random greens to disenchant. The resulting mats have let him build his Enchanting skill up to 365. The end is nigh...

Elizia finally got around to exploring Maraudon, the first of my characters to do so. Even she had left it a bit late; all the quests were green or grey, and about 2/3 of the mobs were grey as well. The quest rewards were mostly obsolete for me by now. But I had never been, and wanted to see the sights. The final segment of the dungeon was really beautiful, one of the prettiest spaces I've seen in WoW: deep canyons with flowing waterfalls, giant flowers, all lit up by a bright sun overhead. There was also some kickass combat music in some sections. (Although that may be new; I've noticed a lot of cool new music since the latest patch, mostly in ships and taverns.)

Maraudon is an old-school instance, and took about three hours to clear, even skipping some of the optional bosses. And that was with a group that was, overall, above par level-wise. When you add that in to the hour-plus it takes to actually get a PUG together, you're talking a serious time commitment. I'm glad I did it the once, but I am unlikely to go back any time soon.

Elizia has also started exploring Felwood. Sometime during the months since Rumpelstilt was last there, they added a new Alliance flight point at the southern end of the zone. This makes Felwood noticeably less annoying, though the quests there do still involve heaps of travel time.
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