In the meantime

Since raiding has been off the table in any serious capacity for the past couple weeks, what have I been up to in WoW?

With the exception of this past weekend, not much.

I started playing LoL and almost as quickly lost interest.

Watched the first 4 seasons of Venture Bros. Seriously, if you aren’t watching this, you need to start. What are you waiting for? Go watch!

And then two things happened.

Patch 5.4 and the promise of 489 catch-up gear for my alts and 100 free valor (if I can cap on Arioch) each week until this shindig ends (anyone know when it will end?) had me itching to put some serious hours back in to the game.

The second thing was my overwhelming guilt for not keeping up on my cousin’s gaming podcast (check him out over at www.extradamage.com ) finally caught up with me.

I had the perfect opportunity to roam the Barrens, mindlessly slaughtering Kor’kron and escorting caravans, while listening to the MANY hours of podcast I had fallen behind on.

I am sad to say that I’m still not caught up on the podcast (episode 19!) , but I made progress all over the place in WoW on multiple characters. Continue reading

What the hell is going on around here?

Seriously?

Guild goes on raiding hiatus.

Weird “this is all your fault” drama with a potential to raid with my old guild.

I filled in here and there, but the start time of 4:30 local just is too tight when I’m in meetings that run until 4:30 on those days. No hard feelings, I think they found another mage anyway. I did get Tortus and Megaera down (still no Council for me).

Now, my GM has stepped down and left his GF in charge because he doesn’t know where he’s living from day to day. (Somehow, his being homeless increases the likelihood of his children having a roof over their heads. I can’t even pretend to understand the intricacies of this guy’s life.)

We’re set to raid again this week, new raid days of Wednesday and Thusday.

But we had a brief interlude where a miracle almost happened. Continue reading

How does this even happen?

Remember the other day when I said that my guild was on hiatus?

No, that didn’t change.

But the week before I *gasp* offered to gear my priest up since replacing DPS would theoretically be easier than replacing a healer (and with the exception of Tir, we’ve had pretty crappy luck with recruiting healers in the first place).

I was told, no, I should stay on the mage because my damage would be difficult to replace.

Awwww, how sweet. Continue reading

As Promised

I said yesterday I would provide an update on how the raid went last night so here’s a post!

But first, another really stupid thing I’ve done in WoW!

Yesterday I talked about leveling up cooking on my DK (who got his 522 neck last night, FYI) for the express purpose of making mogu fish stews for the mage and getting cooking points at the same time but then I realized that the fish stew was a 600 recipe so I basically just wasted time.

*deep breath after that run on sentence*

Last night I realized I had been doing something STUPID for the past couple of weeks with my priest. Continue reading

Caving to pressure

So you know how I posted yesterday that I didn’t have to run any heroics?

Well, I had that post sitting in my drafts for a few days before I actually got around to hitting publish.

I did get to 460 with what I could scrape together outside of heroics.

I did get to Revered with the Order of the Cloud Serpent in one day and bought the first four panther patterns.

I did run both halves of MSV and Sha prior to the Tuesday reset, netting me a belt off Elegon.

With no coins, I opted to only run them once.

On Tuesday, with my near-instant LFR queue time, I ran both halves of MSV again. Continue reading

Heroics Required?

Hardly.

It’s no small secret that I hate heroics.

I used to love them.

Even with all the issues I had in BC playing with people that weren’t quite on the same page for dungeons (threat, LOS, single-target, etc. were all concepts that hadn’t been learned yet), I still enjoyed them.

In Wrath, we all got better and played with more advanced players. Heroics were fast and enjoyable.

Then came Cata.

I had a LOT of pressure to get Selwyn up and raid-ready ASAP. I was sick for the launch and had to play catch up, mostly in the form of my guild chain-running heroics.

It was terrible.

I’m not the best player in the world, but I was holding my own very nicely as a healer. And I almost deleted my healer after running the first Cata heroic.

So I’ve made it a point to avoid heroics like the plague. Arioch will eventually need to run a few to get my panda rep for the turtles, but I’m not looking forward to it.

Raiding hasn’t gotten much better in my guild. (The success of my recent rant post was short lived.)

We did get Elegon down prior to the nerf and proceeded to wipe 3 times on Will and had to give up for the night. I managed to pug my Will kill that night, I barely got my feat of strength for completing MSV. But I still haven’t set foot in to HoF or ToES outside of LFR.

(That was part of my exciting news, there’s one more squee piece to come later.)

Facing another tier of frustration, I decided it was time to get on the level train for Selwyn and start raiding with him. I will most likely pull one character out to find a new guild… then my guild starts talking about forming a second core… we are still pugging to fill our normal 10-man raid. /headdesk

But no raiding until level 90!

The weekend before last I bit the bullet and ran a dungeon. Happened to get a great tank from my server. We ended up running a few dungeons and friending each other. There was a plan to meet up to make the final push to 90.

We missed each other being logged in, so over the next weekend I quested my little heart out and hit 90 running errands for the Klaxxi.

I immediately dug through my bags and started equipping my saved stash. I had about a 435 ilevel when I started, some of my heroic pieces and tier from DS were hard to replace.

Ready to go in my bags I had a 496 crafted chest, 496 crafted gloves, Relic of Chi-Ji, 2/2 upgraded 476 inscription Crane staff, and after a quick flight to Townlong (after a detour to Jade Forest because I’m an idiot) the Sha of Anger quest boots. I was already using my Zen alchemist stone (upgraded its 1 level).

That put me in the 450s, which wasn’t quite good enough.

Off to the AH!

I picked up a couple materials to make a Band of Blood ring (450) and I snagged two 458 PvP pieces (helm and shoulders – meta gem and 2-piece bonus).

Back to Townlong to hit up the JP vendor. Another ring and a cloak upgrade got me to 460 by the skin of my teeth.

I was saving my VP for the 522 neck, but at 1250 valor that means it meant it would be sometime during the next week before I could claim it.

460 attained, everything gemmed/enchanted, off to LFR!

So much for improved drop rates.

I got a Spirit of Harmony in one fail bag and got a belt of Elegon (pushing ilevel to 464).

Even as a fresh 90 and at the bottom of the gear level for entrance, I still think I held my own healing.

Mana feels a little weird and Solace doesn’t seem to return as much (or as often) to feel useful.

Prayer of Healing not creating a DA shield is hard for me to get around, I’ve moved a couple buttons around but it’s still hard to remember to use Spirit Shell first to do what PoH used to do by itself. I think it will get easier as I get a better feel for the damage spikes in the fights and I retrain myself.

I opted for Cascade – OMG that puts some big numbers on my screen! I still think Halo is a prettier spell, but it’s hard to argue with what boils down to Prayer of Mending on crack.

After enjoying my 2-3 minute queues for LFR, I flew out to the Arboretum to start my Order of the Cloud Serpent reputation. With one onyx egg and one championed heroic ran with the guild, I’m halfway to Exalted. In one day. My little serpent must have been on steroids, but he was ready to fly after one day of poop-picking.

I have the 4 basic panther patterns and should have the onyx one in another day or two. Now to collect a bunch of mats.

This brings me to 4 level 90s… how long until I pick the fifth to get the next achievement?

Where you stand matters

As I’ve mentioned before, our Group 2 raids on Tuesday/Wednesday and is currently only raiding on Wednesday to alleviate lag issues that plague some members on the higher-population start of the raiding week.

So we’re trucking along Wednesday night, downing H Morchock in 2 pulls (even with the additional nerf, everyone needs to take stomps appropriately on the side with one healer).

We’re clearing trash on Yor’Sahj and two things come to mind.

The first is something I think about every week, regardless of the toon or group I’m with: The trash gets cleared in a circular path around the boss, starting at the portal entrance. Continue reading

Actual WoW Update

Taking a quick break from the 20 Days of WoW Blogging Challenge (which really should be called 20 days of FREE CONTENT IDEAS!!) to insert a post that is actually about WoW.

My guild’s second group has altered our raiding schedule. This is the group that I raid in on my priest and used to be Tuesday and Wednesday. Since we’re regularly doing a 1-night clear, Wednesday ends up being open.

Apparently quite a few people in the group are experiencing excessive lag on Tuesdays so we’ve shortened the schedule to just raiding on Wednesday.

Until we’re ready to go “hardcore into heroics”… Continue reading

Spotlight for Selwyn

The funniest thing about this little banner project of mine is that almost none of these banners have ended up looking like what my original (admittedly hazy) vision was.

I had this image of swirls and loop-de-loops with contrasting colors and it was bold and exciting!

And I became so thoroughly distracted with all the neat STUFF that I found that nothing quite like the beginning thought has been created.

That’s OK.

I’ve had a lot of fun just poking at this and seeing what happens.

And that’s kind of how Selwyn’s banner came to be.

The other day I was running around Org and my random mount of the moment was the Winged Guardian.

I was admiring the use of contrasting colors, the bold purples with the creams, and the hints of pale blue with a splash of lavendar. It’s really a very pretty mount.

Suddenly it struck me as only natural that I start a banner with a palette in mind instead of the randomly clicking about on a color wheel method I normally employ. Continue reading