RAMBLINGS FROM THE WORLD OF WARCRAFT

Archive for January, 2013

Lunar Festival Madness: Why Am I Doing This Again?

In-game holidays are fun, right? (Sidenote: how the hell is that dude riding his wind serpent upside down? [not an innuendo])

crowd

When the achievement “What A Long, Strange Trip It’s Been” went live in September 2009 I immediately began doing all the things. I actually got the achievement pretty quick, though if I remember right I had to wait for the second Love Is In The Air to roll around because I missed one of the elements the first time. I was actually trying to verify the dates a few minutes ago by viewing my achievements, but I don’t believe they’re displaying correctly. If they are, then I actually completed this the first time through each event.

EITHER WAY, the point is I haven’t done the Lunar Festival in it’s entirety since then. I mean, if I happen across an Elder I will stop and get free xp or gold depending on my character, but I haven’t bothered to fly all the places and track them all down in years. However this year the Lunar Festival happens to coincide with me making a big effort to level up my DK. She’s around the lvl 64, 65 mark so when the event began I thought to myself “self, you should fly around the lands and get that free xp. It will be easier than leveling and will fit right in to your lazy lifestyle.” Of course, I still have other toons to take care of, so I’m not devoting all of my time to it but I’ve been chasing down Elders for a few hours a day the past 3 days and I’m really starting to question if it’s worth it. I mean, I’m not max level so in enemy territory the NPCs are kicking my ass. In the higher level Northrend and Cataclysm zones, any old regular mob I get too close to is kicking my ass. As a DK I basically went from Eastern Plaguelands to Hellfire Peninsula so even though we start off with a lot of flight paths already known to us, most of my maps aren’t opened up to show location names. This means I’m spending a lot of time tabbed out to look up coordinates for the majority of the elders. So between the repair bills and all the wasted time running back to my body, flying across the land and tabbing out every 3 minutes I’m beginning to wonder why I’m doing this. I am pretty sure if I had stayed in Nagrand and continued questing this entire time, I’d be leveling much faster. Although I will say I am enjoying grabbing all of the mining nodes I come across.

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Oh that’s right. I’m doing it for the Lunar Lantern. Never mind the rant, totally worth it.

Also, I am now realizing I should do this on one of my Horde toons to get that pet as well. But I can guarantee I will use the level 90 for that adventure.

The One Where I Join A New Guild & Rant About Tempest Keep

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Gather ’round, everyone. I have an announcement to make. As you can see by the magical floating text being displayed above my head, I have joined a new guild. Some of you may recall I recently mentioned I was casually looking for a new guild to be … err, casual in … and I am happy to report I have found myself a new home. The wonderful people at Business Time graciously allowed me to spend a couple of weeks with them on an alt so we could get to know each other and I could gauge if there was more social activity during the main hours I am logged into the game than there was in my current guild. I am happy to report they didn’t immediately hate me and they are indeed more chatty and have more people online at once than I had been previously experiencing. On Saturday night they offered to let me make them my new, permanent home. I moved Elfindale over that night and have really enjoyed seeing all the good-natured guild chat and how they all pick on each other. So while I always get a little sad and totally feel bad when I leave a guild behind, I can’t help but be excited to have a more social experience now. Thank you, Business Time, for letting me hang with you guys.

announcement2In other news, I am frustrated. Can you tell? Even though my friend Grace can easily solo Tempest Keep (and in fact, last week she finally got the Ashes of Al’ar mount. YAY!) and has explained her method to me in vent I am still going in there and dying repeatedly after I burn all the weapons down and the 4 asshats that are Kael’thas sidekicks make their way back to me. At the start of the fight, I am running back to the entrance & downing those 4 in varying intervals between the entrance and Kael’s room, but as they all come back to life once the weapons are dead I just am unable to do anything else. Even with the staff equipped and being used, I stay stunned, disoriented, silenced with no chances to heal myself or throw more than one or two instant spells until finally I’m dead. I read on the forums that there seems to be a bug where the buff from the staff does not work and others have experienced the same problem I am having. But it’s odd that I would get that bug every time and Grace never saw it once. Stupid Undead Priests. :P

Hooray For New Mounts

My tiny little Horde guild managed to luck into 5 of us online last Friday evening and we stormed through Ulduar 10 man to collect our Rusted Proto Drakes. Achievements and mounts for everyone! Next on the agenda, finish the 25 man run we have mostly completed to get the Ironbound Proto Drakes for those of us who still don’t have them.

Sidenote: It is hard to get a good picture of 5 flapping drakes. Sorry my dragon is rudely covering your face, Morgrull.

rusted mounts

The One Where I Bought A Treadmill Desk

Yep, you read that right. Almost two weeks ago, I bought a treadmill desk. It was my Christmas / New Year’s gift to myself because this year I’m finally going to get serious about my health and weight. I am not so lazy that I can only exercise while being on the pc, but I am smart enough to realize that I don’t go to the gym every day or stay longer than an hour when I do go because I am more interested in being online with my friends. So with my new purchase I can add to what I do at the gym by also walking while I’m doing dailies and talking in vent. It takes away the whole “I really need to spend 2 hours at the gym, but _____ will be online in 30 minutes and I haven’t talked to them all day” dilemma. I know, it’s a dilemma that I shouldn’t have ever had, but seriously, I didn’t get to be such a huge fatass by making the correct choices in life. So the treadmill desk is a fantastic option.

I first heard about these types of desks a few years ago when a saw a news special about treadmill desks being an option (a very expensive option) in some workplaces. I was immediately interested but the professional type were just too costly and too big to be something I could actually consider buying. But as things tend to do, now that it’s a few years later prices have dropped and options have increased. I bought mine from Target.com and 2 weeks ago it was priced at $713 with free shipping and because I used my Target RedCard, I got an instant 5% discount so that I only ended up paying $706 after taxes to have it shipped to me. Currently, the same one I bought is listed at $663 but it doesn’t say Free Shipping so I can’t say for sure what the final price would be. Here’s the link. It’s just my luck it would go on sale after I bought it, but I am so happy to finally have one I really don’t even care.

As far as a review of this particular model – I am very satisfied with it. It’s much bigger than the picture online made it appear. In fact, the desk portion is so huge the cup holders that are on the front edge of the desk aren’t even usable because there’s no way you can reach them while you’re on the treadmill. It’s very thick and sturdy feeling, it doesn’t feel like a cheap version at all. In fact, it came with a sticker on the control panel stating it’s rated for people up to 400 pounds. I am nowhere near that weight, but it does make me feel like it’s probably going to remain sturdy for quite a while since it’s built to hold a weight much higher than mine. As far as how comfortable it is to use the pc while walking, I find it to be just fine. If you were using it to do a great deal of constant typing, you may want to add some sort of keyboard wrist support, but since I’m only typing to chat and mostly using my mouse with my right hand and my game-related keystrokes with my left hand, I’m perfectly comfortable resting my hands on the foam molded areas on the sides of the treadmill’s control panel. It’s when you are doing serious typing and have to move both arms off of the molded areas and basically hover over the control panel that it would likely get uncomfortable. However, like I mentioned, I imagine it would be pretty easy to just scoot the keyboard back a bit and use your own wrist support.

My only complaint (cup holder issue is not a legitimate complaint, I just set my cup elsewhere) is that the treadmill handles both have controls on them. The right one has buttons to increase / decrease speed and the left one to increase / decrease incline. You can adjust the speed and the incline both from the main control panel, so I have no idea why they are also included in the handles. I suppose they thought it was a convenience, but they are easy to accidentally bump. Obviously I don’t hang on to the handles because I’m mousing and typing. And when your using the desk, that part of the handles is behind you anyway. But if you’re using the treadmill simply as a treadmill, which I do for at least 30 minutes so that I am actually walking at an increased speed, then anytime you reach down to the handle for balance or whatever, the controls are easy to bump. Of course, I assembled the damn thing myself so I suppose I could have simply not connected the wiring to the handles.

Alright, this is getting boring. Let me wrap this up. Treadmill desks are awesome. The one I bought is awesome. If you have any interest in owning one and are able to spend the money, I highly recommend you do so. I am so fat and out of shape I’m not yet spending all my gaming time on the treadmill, but I’ve tried to average 2 hours a day so far. I walk at 1 mile an hour while gaming and I look forward to increasing both my time walking and the speed at which I’m walking. I have been really surprised at how easy it is to actually do questing while walking. I initially thought I would just do simple tasks like fishing. Nope, I’m leveling alts while burning calories. It’s awesome. I’m hoping as I build up stamina and my balance gets more used to the whole event, I can actually run dungeons this way. However, I would never try raiding because raiding is way too serious to risk making mistakes.

And now, PICTURES! Since I live alone, my pc and desk are in my living room. I have no desire to spend all my time sitting in a bedroom facing a wall. I sit in the living room and talk to the cat while watching Netflix. I decided to place my treadmill desk next to my regular desk so I could simply move my keyboard, mouse and monitor back and forth instead of using my inferior quality laptop or moving my entire system daily.

Here’s what you see as you enter my living room:
treadmill 1

Here’s the view from the other side:
treadmill 2

My view of the TV for regular walking at 3mph:
treadmill 3

And what it looks like while logged in:
treadmill 4

Silly Minipost, Just Because I Can

I have these weird issues where I don’t want the internet to be mad at me so with me being completely aware how far behind the curve my dps is, I have not been running 5 mans – heroic or otherwise. I’d say the last time I was in a MoP dungeon was probably early December. Out of all the heroics there are in Pandaland, I had only set foot in 3 of them up until yesterday. Yesterday I decided to brave up and see if all of the work I’ve been doing to improve is actually working. I queued for a random and unfortunately got Gate of the Setting Sun which I had never been in before. So great, on top of already being worried I was going to be yelled at and kicked in general, now I gotta worry that I have no idea what any of the bosses do.

Well I’m happy to report I did not get yelled at once, or kicked. In fact, the purpose of this post is to show you my dps. Keep in mind I was a bit derpy due to not being aware of what was going to happen and where I should be standing. So I could have actually had higher numbers if not for the times I was running for my life to get out of shit on the ground. Yep, I’d say I’m improving. I think I might start doing more heroics now.

(mine’s the one that says Elfindale, just in case you’re wondering :P)
Heroic Gate of the Setting Sun

The One Where I Get Navispammed & I Win A Contest (these events not related)

You guys, this year is going amazing for me so far and based on all the good fortune I’ve had this month, I’m excited to see what lies ahead. A lot of very cool things have happened to me recently and they just won’t all fit in one post, so I’m going to start off by telling you about two very squee worthy happenings involving our amazing WoW community. In chronological order, just to be fair.

First, I GOT NAVISPAMMED!! Woot! What a tremendous surprise. I have been reading of Navimie’s adventures in tracking down members of the community for quite a while now but I never once considered I’d be someone she’d be interested in meeting. I won’t go into great detail about the meeting because she’s already written up a brilliant post with all of the details and plenty of fun screenshots on her own fun blog. I will simply agree with her I was very surprised, I do believe her and I have very similar blogs (though she blows me away with the amount and detail of content) and we totally did jump on the bed in childish abandon. And I will also toss in a few of my own screenshots, although she totally had the screenshot thing covered.

Here we are jumping on the bed:
naviscreen1

Here we are being stealthy with Shadowmeld:
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And here I am showing off my newly named Teldrassil Sproutling
naviscreen3

It was so much fun having Navi surprise me this way. We actually chatted for about an hour and while I taught her that Blingtron will give you pimp clothes, I will admit (with much embarrassment) she had to teach me how to kick my vendors off my mammoth so that she could hop on and get a ride. So it was fun AND a learning experience for us both. Thanks so much for looking me up, Navimie.

NOW ONTO WINNING A CONTEST – I totally did. I won the hell out of a contest and my prize was a brand-spanking new Swift Windsteed. The contest was held on Femtaur.com by Aune (@notanna) and began with this post to submit entries on a good name for the new, strange-looking mount being sold on the Blizzard Store. The winning entry would receive a code for the mount for free and amazingly, I somehow was chosen as the winner. Yay! What a good email to receive when you first wake up. You can read my entry in the post Aune wrote up to announce the winner. Thanks so much, Aune, for hosting this contest and providing such a great prize. Here’s a couple of pictures of me taking my new ride out for a spin.

mount1

mount2

And finally, I will close by saying that I have finally updated my blog’s background image and header image to reflect the new expansion instead of being stuck in Cataclysm. I realize most people read this from a feed reader so they never see my actual blog, but you should totally go check it out at least once. Although I will say I am not thrilled with my header because I couldn’t remember when I was taking screenshots what the dimensions needed to be and I ended up too close up. I will be redoing it slightly, but it’s basically going to be the same as it is.

The One Where I’m Making Some Progress

At the first of the year I wrote a post about how I was finally ready to make my time in WoW all about me instead of following a crowd or doing things because I felt they were the expected order of things. I mentioned I was going to work on setting some specific goals for myself concerning what my top 3 or 4 main focuses would be. I haven’t actually decided on any specific goals yet, but I certainly have made sure I’ve done more than login just to sit idly and hope some sort of opportunity walks up and smacks me in the back of the head. I’ve been spending more time on alts and just doing whatever random things I have felt like doing. It’s been a lot of fun. I have a total of 11 characters across 4 servers now and between those 11 characters I am in 2 different Horde guilds on a permanent basis, 2 different Alliance guilds (1 as a trial member on a Shaman I’m leveling just to check the guild out) and 2 characters who are guildless just because I like them that way at the moment. I’m feeling pretty good with the state of things and I can tell I’ve actually managed to let go of a lot of the pressure I was putting on myself for no reason. I’m like a free spirit in-game currently. Logging in to whatever faction, guild, character I feel like without worrying about needing to put face time in anywhere with anyone. Well, except for my besties in Cat Ate It on Proudmoore. When they are online I come running cause they’re awesome.

Point is, as a result of this recent free spirit attitude of mine I’ve actually been accomplishing things. This will be completely boring to anyone besides me, but thanks to the wonderful add-on Multishot, I can actually easily see that over the past 2 weeks I have achieved a lot. There are a few that appear to be duplicates, but they were done on separate characters so they count as a new one in my book. And I apologize in advance for the crappy, inconsistent sizes and resolutions of these screenshots. I was lazy and did this at work where I don’t have my fancy photo editing software.

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achievements_7

The One Where I May Finally Be Getting The Hang Of Pet Battling

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I never played Pokemon. Not because I was never interested, exactly, but because I turned 26 the year Pokemon came into existence. I did however have nephews who played all the Game Boy games and watched the cartoons and collected the cards, so I had a basic understanding of it. Now that I’ve dabbled in Pet Battles in WoW, I really wish I had played Pokemon back in the day because I’m beginning to really enjoy this type of little mini-game. Maybe I should pick up a game or two for my Nintendo DS. Yes, maybe I will.

Anyway, point is, it’s been a learning process more so for me than most of you young whippersnappers who grew up with the game. There’s a lot of strategy involved that I’m just now beginning to figure out. I have had many noob moments. Like back in December when I randomly chose to battle and my opponent was a rare I didn’t have. I immediately whipped out my Terrible Turnip because I knew from reading about it on Twitter that the turnip would only take the pet down to 1 health and then you can capture it. What I didn’t realize (because I never had really bothered to pay attention to attack types) is that only weakening blow will leave the pet at 1 health. I went in mashing buttons and killed that rare pretty quickly. Ugh.

Other moronic things I have done as I have slowly started gathering pets is start a battle with 1 or 2 of mine dead and the other at less than half health. That rarely works out, I gotta tell you. I’ve gotten excited about finding something with a slow spawn rate and immediately starting a battle before realizing my pets are level 8 and I’m battling a level 16. That NEVER works out. I’ve camped a slow spawning pet that was 2 levels higher than me and was thrilled the first one I saw was a rare quality and I managed to capture it … only to die on the second pet and not get to keep my captured pet. Which I didn’t realize until I frantically looked through my pet journal and couldn’t find it. Yep, I’ve done a lot of things wrong.

But I’m learning. I’m asking questions on Twitter and reading pet battle blog posts. I’m finally paying attention to what my pets attacks actually do. I’m starting to get the hang of it and the better I get at it, the more addicted I’m becoming. With all of this in mind, I do realize that choosing pets for my team based on how cute they are may not be the best idea. So I’m posting my team here for you guys to make suggestions on what I may want to do differently. Please feel free to look me up on the WoW armory as Elfindale, night elf druid on Moonrunner, and check out what pets I own and let me know your opinion on if i should change up my team or if it’s okay the way it is for now. I welcome all the advice I can get because I’m preparing to really start working on battling and leveling my team up.

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