Archaeology. Oh man, when they first announced it was going to be introduced into the game I was so excited. It sounded awesome. Travel the world, learn more about the lore of the land, dig up cool treasures. How could anyone not want to do that? And it was really fun for about a week. Then the new wore off. Ugh. Talk about a grind. The 12 minute flights across entire continents, the running and surveying and running and surveying and running and surveying and running and surveying and running and finally digging. Digging once, then starting the whole process over. I don’t know why I do this to myself.

Yes, they have totally improved it now. It really is better than it used to be. But it still sucks ass. It’s still cross-continent flights and total randomness and non stop running and surveying. Let’s be honest. No one is still doing Archaeology just for the fun of learning the lore. We grind it out for the mounts and the pets and random cool little toys & transformations. I used to force myself to do 3 or 4 digsites a week in the months after I started leveling it up. Eventually, though, I just couldn’t bear to. Then towards the end of Cata I decided I really needed to get the Vial of the Sands mount for Elfi, so I worked on it a little bit more. But not too much. It still just wore me out.

Cut to the past several months when every time I turn around my crackhead friend with the million alts asks me if I have a 2 person mount so I can fly her to the Shrine. Nope. Still don’t have one. But I should. I’ve got all the mats for the damn mount in my bank; they’ve been there for years. So I’ve decided to give it a go again. After spending hours flying around Kalimdor in hopes that I would spawn some digs in Uldum I wasn’t getting anywhere. I am not even exaggerating when I say I hit 30 digsites in Kalimdor and 1 of them was in Uldum.

Scratch that. Let’s try something different. I think it may actually be faster (due to shorter length of flights) to dig in Pandaria and then crate my artifacts and turn crates in for Tol’Vir crates. Which is what I’ve been doing all morning. I also traded some Spirits of Harmony for crated artifacts. I think this may be the best method for me. It seemed like I got keystone from about half the crates so I was able to solve quite a few times. Unfortunately with all my Tol’Vir solves I have only gotten 1 canopic jar so far. However, between all the Night Elf and Fossil solves from my Kalimdor digs and the Tol’Vir onesI did end up with a couple of pets, the fossilized raptor mount and some other little something. Nothing major.

Just an Ultramarine Qiraji Battle Tank. That ole thing.

Squee! I still am not loving arch and I still have a long way to go to get the damn dragon transformation mount, but I am very happy I lucked into this thing. It’s a beast.

Mount1

Blah

I read dozens of WoW-centric blog posts a day ranging in content from news about recently gained pets to detailed “how to” guides. I enjoy them all. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t read them. Yet when it comes to my own blog I find myself not writing posts because I feel the silly, unimportant subject matter could not possibly be exciting to anyone. This frustrates me. I enjoy blogging. I KNOW blogging is supposed to be for me and no one else. I certainly don’t pop in here simply because I need attention or desire to grow a massive audience. But as a child, I didn’t dream of becoming an astronaut or a princess or a superhero – I dreamed of being a photojournalist for National Geographic. From as early as I can remember I collected those magazines from every garage sale or old person that had them. My room had hundreds and hundreds of bright yellow-bound magazines stacked in it. In my teen years, I added novelist to the list. I read my first Stephen King book at age 11 and after reading 5 or 6 more (along with what I swear must have been every book my tiny school library had to offer) I was convinced writing was in my future.

Hey, guess what? Nope. Turns out I was too shy to complete the journalism classes I tried to take in college. Too lazy to do much writing of any other kind, apparently. I also don’t have much of an imagination anymore. I don’t know where I lost it. In my 20’s I wrote some poetry. Not epic poetry, or romantic poetry. Mostly what I’d consider dark poetry, I suppose, for lack of better categorization options. Maybe no one else would agree. /shrug. All I know is poems would randomly just start forming in my mind and lay themselves down line by line, piling up until my head felt like it was going to burst open if I didn’t stop and write it down. Most of my poetry was first written on random scraps of paper and napkins that happened to be near me when this happened. They always seemed to spew forth without needing to be edited or cleaned up. I miss that feeling. Even if no one else ever thought they were good poems, I liked them. Why can’t that feeling come back to me?

In case you haven’t noticed, this is just a mind dump. I sat here with the new blog post window open and couldn’t decide which insignificant detail of my gaming life to share so this started pouring out instead. My apologies. I used to have no trouble writing blog posts. Hey, while we’re on that subject, December 7 marked my 3rd yr anniversary at World of Elfi. It all began with an open letter to Blizzard. Ah, I used to be so entertaining. To myself, if no one else. I was fine with entertaining myself for so long. How did that stop? I didn’t mean to intentionally ignore my anniversary. Just accidentally overlooked it.

I still enjoy the hell out of the game. Sometimes my interest drops a bit if other side projects have my attention, but currently I’m in a big WoW upswing. It started ramping up as Blizzcon approached and it’s still going. Obviously my writing issues aren’t related to that.

Yes, it does strike me as funny that I’ve just used all these words to form lines and paragraphs of useless rambling about how I don’t write as much as I used to because I’m afraid it’s all useless rambling. Heh. I think that’s a clear indication I should sign off for today.

Here’s hoping sometime soon I’ll post about my latest boring pet, achievement, gear, etc.

Last month I was thrilled to receive an email from a dear friend who I don’t get to talk to very often these days. It was an email addressed to a group of a us that had all ran together back in the day on various servers, in various guilds & even in other games. She was suggesting we pick a night to plan to hang out together and catch up with each other and just have fun. What an awesome idea. To make things simple, after everyone chipped in some suggestions, it was decided we would do some sort of level 1 gnome race through Azeroth because even those of us who had left WoW for good could roll a new toon for free and participate.

December 14th was chosen as the date and Mumble server information was shared. I was so excited and couldn’t wait for the 14th to get here. I missed hanging out with this group of people and the occasional tweets and random gtalk chats with a few of the members just wasn’t enough. Being able to spend a couple of hours in Mumble would be brilliant. Unfortunately, as the date approached, my company holiday party ended up being that same night. Holiday party starting at 7pm, naked gnome race at 8pm. So I had to split my time a bit between the two and I went to the holiday party from 6:30pm (yeah, first one in the door trying to get my time in) to approx. 08:15 pm and then arrived back home and logged into WoW and Mumble to join the gang at about 8:30ish pm.

I had told them beforehand not to wait on me, so when I finally joined they had gotten their gnomes over to Kalimdor and were racing to the Dire Maul meeting stone. Most of them were in Stonetalon Mountains when I arrived so I ended up rolling a Night Elf real quick to sorta catch up and I headed that way.

Yep, I was the last to arrive at the meeting stone but they didn’t have to wait on me more than 10 -15 minutes or so. There wasn’t a lot of screenshots because there were so many deaths and different routes being taken not a lot of us were grouped up together. Especially me, bringing up the rear. But just talking to these guys in Mumble and laughing together and making fun of each other … it was awesome. It did my heart some good. It was a brilliant idea & I am very grateful I got the chance to participate.

Here’s a screenshot of some of us at the meeting stone. It should be easy to spot the beloved brat who initiated the email and was our fearless leader. Just like the old days. She’s so amazing she just hovers above us all. Lol. Good times. Great friends. Loved it.

gnome race

Then on Sunday evening I happened to be in the right place at the right time and was invited to join my guildies Supp and Ulla for a little time spent working on specific achievements through Heroic scenarios. They were trying to complete specific ones they were missing & needed a warm body to queue. I have done heroic scenarios maybe only a total of 15 times and most of those were on my Troll, so I just followed along and didn’t worry about trying to complete certain objectives. Of course, when you’ve barely done anything and then you’re in a group doing very specific thing, achievements will happen. Thanks again for the fun times, Supp and Ulla. I really appreciate it.

scenario cheeves

lvl 85

I had mentioned at the beginning of the month that I’ve been working on leveling a Night Elf Monk to help my guild earn the Stay Classy achievement. Well last night I finally got to 85. It’s been a really fun project in terms of seeing some new people around helping and being able to run some low level stuff with guildies. But it’s also been personally rewarding for me in ways I’m not even sure I can explain. Truly, I cannot explain it. I keep wanting to say something about proving I can set a goal and stick with it until completion … but that’s not something I have trouble with irl and I already have 3 level 90’s in game. So I’m not sure why this character makes me feel proud of completion. Hmm. Anyway, it was rewarding and I’m very proud of it for many unknown and/or ridiculous reasons.

The monk and I have had quite a journey & I am going to be sad when she hits level 90 and just becomes a profession mule for me. She was way more fun than the DK and I feel like I play the monk better than the DK. Maybe I’ll try to fit in dungeons and scenarios with her once or twice a week. I’m not even through leveling her and I feel like I miss her already. Lol.

But now the achievement is … uh … achieved… as far as my participation is concerned and I won’t be spending the majority of my time on her. I must get back to working on improving Elfi in the hope she may one day be a viable Flex option. So I want to use this space to leave a condensed version of the fun we’ve had together.

I started out so innocently in the forests of Teldrassil:

the beginning

But I immediately ventured out into the world to offer my assistance & I was a pretty quick learner:

deadmines

Eventually I got to where I was kicking a lot of ass:

kicked a lot of ass

And I can’t even count how many beautiful things I saw along the way:

fun along the way 2

I made sacrifices when necessary & stayed where I was needed:

moved whenever necessary

I elbowed my way through the masses to make sure I got my fair share:

battled my way through

I’m proud to say I did not merely survive, but learned and gained and improved and contributed:

not a total idiot

And now I have stepped foot onto new ground & though I will be slowing down a bit in my adventures, I know there are many wonderful things ahead of me:

landed in Jade Forest

It’s been a lot of fun. I am glad Business Time allowed me the opportunity to contribute. Now maybe I will convince myself to start seriously working on the handful of alts I have created and never touched. A monster may have been created…

Tuesday night I decided to take a small break from leveling the Monk and do a bit of SoO LFR. This resulted in me accidentally earning 3000 valor (cap valor weekly? wut? I can’t do it in months :P) and completing the “A Test of Valor” achievement for Prince Wrathion.

Huh. Look at that. I accidentally advanced in the legendary questline. Might as well keep going, eh? So I decided to keep going. This is riveting stuff, yes?

Anyway, as you know, the next steps were to do some PvP battlegrounds and kill that one dude at Domination Point. My adorable friend, Grace, was just a tiny bit ahead of me in this questline so she had already killed him and when she saw I was at that point she immediately volunteered to meet me over there and help me get the kill. Which I was completely grateful for even though it made me stupid. Which means that I knew where Domination Point was but my brain hadn’t processed exactly who I was looking for. I’m someone who needs a few seconds to process. But instead I immediately headed that way so I wouldn’t inconvenience Grace by making her wait on me. Big surprise – the fact I didn’t stop to get it in my brain what I needed to do actually ended up being more of an inconvenience to her because I flew straight in there trying to hurry and of course I got shot out of the sky. Then it took me forever to work my way around and find my body. The more stupid I was in-game, the more panicked I became about being stupid which, of course, resulted in me being more stupid. I am not someone who experiences much anxiety but for some reason, trying to not be stupid in front of my friends and guildies in-game is the leading cause of anxiety for me. And it always backfires.

Moving on, Grace killed the dude for me. Lol. Next stop – the battlegrounds. I did Silvershard Mines that night and the Alliance won the first one I joined. Well that was easy. Can’t wait to do the Temple in the morning after work.

When I did queue for the Temple of Kotmogu the next morning, things did not go as smooth as the Mines did. The Alliance was sucking it up, big time. My 3rd time in we lost by 2 points which was extremely frustrating, but not nearly as frustrating as losing by 1000 points or more every other time. Ugh. It’s like no one understood the whole point of the battleground. Carry an orb around as long as you can. As soon as an orb is returned, go grab the fucking orb. I didn’t think it was that hard but most people seemed to be more worried about killing Horde rather than watching orbs at all. /shrug. Maybe I’m the idiot here. Either way, paying attention to the orbs got me several achievements as I ran the place over and over. Finally, on like my 35th visit, I got a team that dominated. We had all 4 orbs within the first minute and stood in the center bunched up with healer’s healing us while we kicked the ass of any one who came near. It was a flawless victory where the horde had less than 100 points. So weird how smooth that run went. And, it meant I had my victory and could be done.

Interestingly enough, I actually enjoyed the Temple a lot and I might consider getting some PvP gear and do that one when I get bored.

With that stuff out of the way, I completed “Chapter II: Wrathion’s War” and my journey towards the cloak continues. Now I’ve got to LFR enough to gather 20 Secretes of the Empire and spend some time on Thunder Isle to gain rep with the Prince.

But I’m going to put that on hold for now and get back to the Monk. I have 20 levels to go to do my part for the guild achievement. I still expect I’ll be the last to hit 85, but hopefully I’ll have it done in just a few days.

silvershard cheevestemple cheeveswrathion cheeves

Wow-64 2013-12-02 13-41-33-85

My guild recently realized we weren’t too terribly far away from earning the Stay Classy achievement and opening up a new bank tab. So the challenge went out to work on some alts if we were interested. Since I am not tied to a toon that has to stay valor capped & raid ready, I knew I should have plenty of time to help so I jumped right in. One of the combinations we needed was Night Elf Monk so I claimed that one as quick as I could. She’s my 4th Night Elf on this server and my first ever monk.

I chose the WindWalker DPS spec and I must say, even though I always claim to hate melee classes, I’m having a lot of fun with her. Am I good at playing her? Doubt it. Am I enjoying playing her? Absolutely. Way more than I expected. The list of what was needed to get the achievement was posted on 11/14, less than 3 weeks ago, and even with an extended 4 day Holiday weekend away from home and making sure I don’t completely ignore my main, I’ve managed to get my Monk up to level 63 (at time of writing). Of course, the 9th Anniversary xp buff could not have happened at a better time; all of us that are helping get these toons up have really benefited from that.

While the Monk herself has been fun, I think the best part of this whole thing has been getting to spend time with some of my favorite Twitter folks who decided to join the guild as social members for the purpose of helping. We’re all leveling pretty quickly and it’s fun to log in and see so many alts all around the same level. I’m lucky in that I’ve got the Monk buff for an hour a day and this is my home server so I have heirlooms – it amazes me that some of these awesome Twitter people are leveling so fast without having any money or heirloom items on this server at all. I’ve tried to offer my money to help them buy new gear, keep up with repairs, etc., but no one will take it. I suppose I should have expected that since you have to be a special kind of crackhead to agree to come to a new server and start a new toon when you have your own stuff you need to keep up with too.

Now that the Anniversary xp buff is gone I am starting to pressure myself to make sure I continue to level as quickly as possible. I’ve been hanging in there around the same level as most people so far, but I am not normally a fast leveler. I get too easily distracted and find myself standing idle quite a bit. But I certainly don’t want to be the person who we’re waiting on for 2 weeks to finish up the achievement. It’s no big deal if I’m the last to hit 85, someone always has to be the last. I just don’t want it to be a situation where I’m the last by a lengthy amount of time.

I will say, leveling up by just running dungeons as fast as the queue will let you has not been as boring as I expected it to be. Maybe that’s because I’m only running each dungeon twice before I’ve levelled away from it. Lol. Now that I’m in the mid 60’s things will likely slow down and I’ll start to get sick of the same ones over and over. I did run Hellfire Rampants 5 times last night & The Blood Furnace 3 times. I’m sure you could tell by the always recognizable weapon in my screenshot that I had been in the Rampants a few times though. The only thing I’ve not been able to do correctly is keep up with two professions. I’m doing skinning and leatherworking and I’ve been making myself stay up with skinning because there’s almost always something to skin in the dungeons. Leatherworking has fallen behind though as I’m not gathering enough of a certain type of leather before I start gathering the next level higher. I suppose if I’d break down and spend some money on some leather I could catch up pretty quickly, but if I’m going to have to do it with money then there’s no difference between doing it now or catching it up later.

Okay, I guess I should do less talking and more leveling. I will be sure to update you once I hit 85 (for the achievement) and 90.

For worst designed path to flightmaster in all of WoW – (drumroll please) – Nethergarde Keep, Blasted Lands

Here’s a detailed look into how this was chosen as the winner!

Coming in HOT! Nope, forgot to jump
Wow-64 2013-11-26 12-11-51-95

Jumped! Oh, fuck me
Wow-64 2013-11-26 12-12-21-93

Coming back around! MOVE YOU FUCKING BIRD
Wow-64 2013-11-26 12-12-59-70

Woo, I got this now! OMG, it’s Deadman’s Curve
Wow-64 2013-11-26 12-12-48-34

I can see the top! Nope, forgot to jump
Wow-64 2013-11-26 12-13-56-30

Jumped! Oh, fuck me
Wow-64 2013-11-26 12-14-00-55

Coming in HOT! A little too hot…
Wow-64 2013-11-26 12-13-25-53

Screw you Deadman’s Curve! Oh fml, hang on
Wow-64 2013-11-26 12-13-33-16

VICTORY! And only 20 seconds faster than it would have taken me to run to Stormwind
Wow-64 2013-11-26 12-15-40-60

The feeling of excitement from being able to attend Blizzcon may not wear off for a while, but things have returned to normal regardless. I’m back home, back to work, back to the Timeless Isle and working on using LFR to practice SoO in the hopes I might one day get a chance to go through there on flex.

The first step, however, was to actually finish the last stage of ToT which I had never completed. I really have no good excuse for that. It was combination of laziness, not having friends to queue up with, too busy standing idly in Stormwind chatting with my guildies, herbing.. you know, all the standard excuses. But I took care of the problem by queueing immediately and got that out of the way so I could head into SoO knowing I had done everything prior. I’m totally glad I decided to do it too because my Treasures of the Thunder King bag contained a Cracked Primal Egg and in 3 days I had myself a shiny new Red Primal Raptor mount. (Note: these things aren’t very red at all)

dino mount

In between trying to actually earn valor on Elfi for the purpose of upgrading gear and finally being respectable and trying to get back into the habit of keeping up with my Tillers farm on all 3 of my level 90’s, I did manage to get some time in on the Timeless Isle and was super excited to have 2 pets drop for me this week. Hooray for good luck!

Wow-64 2013-11-21 11-15-45-01
Wow-64 2013-11-21 11-17-22-30

Still have a lot of pets and mounts on my wishlist but these are a fine start. Maybe my luck will stick with me a little longer. I’d love to get the Ruby Droplet so I don’t have to make my way up to Garnia anymore.