Archive for October, 2012

The Gods Arrive…

Posted: October 29, 2012 in Of WoW and Warlocks

Hail Everybody,

Well, it finally happened. Gah! I’m so sorry! Normally, I put out one post at least once a week and I have even made it a personal goal to make sure I have them completed and submitted on Sunday nights by midnight. I do my best to be consistent. Well, this past Sunday I missed that deadline and here it is the following Friday and I’m finally getting to catch up. This has been the first time since I’ve started this site that I’ve missed my personal goal. For that reason, I’d like to explain.

One of the hard things for me when it comes to blogging is deciding on how much of my personal life I should share. It’s a tough choice for me for a variety of reasons. Trust me, I’m sure the last thing anyone wants to hear about is my personal life. This is a blog about warlocks and who wants to hear about my real life when they visit hoping to read about ‘locks and Warcraft right?

The Shrine of the Fallen Warrior is a great place to ponder the important questions when you want to be alone to your thoughts

Life’s little wake up calls

Well this week, real life hasn’t been fun for me. In all actuality, it’s been a stark reminder of why we should never take for granted our family and friends, and what we do in life whether it’s in the game, or out in the real world. Two things happened that gave me a sobering wake up call. First, I have an elderly parent going through a major surgery and sadly the second thing that occurred was that I lost a friend. While my parent’s operation was planned and it was expected, the death of my friend was truly a sucker punch to the gut. My friend was young, a loving father for two beautiful children and great husband to a lovely wife. He was a good friend to me, and I’m a better person for having known him.

In the every day struggles of life it’s often easy to lose sight of what’s really important when you’re bogged down in all the busy details. Getting lost in the weeds happens to all of us, and it’s understandable how we can easily lose our sense of direction. Then we get a wake-up call, you know what I mean? Call it a shock, or a jolt, or a sucker punch, but something occurs that smacks our perspective into focus so crystal clear that everything else seems trivial. Everything else seems small and not necessarily as important as it once appeared. This week has been that for me, a wake up call. I’m still goofy old, despicable me – only with a little more perspective tossed my way.

When life hits you with events like this it often makes me think of a famous Ralph Waldo Emerson poem called Give All To Love. The last line says it all, “Heartily know, when half-gods go, the gods arrive.” It’s quite fitting. You can read the full poem here.

My guild hosts a large vigil here each year to celebrate the lives of our RL fallen friends. It’s an amazing event. Oddly enough, I never noticed that there is actually a tomb behind the Spirit Guide. All the little details in the game always amaze me. The timing couldn’t have been better :)

It’s just a game right?

If there is one thing this week has taught me, it’s to enjoy your time and make the most of it. So whether your wiping on a raid boss, or angry that you’re sitting at a spirit healer because the opposing team took you out, or even if a precious rare mount didn’t drop from a boss you brought down for the 200th time…have fun and know that things could be much worse in life than the trials and tribulations of playing a video game.

World PVP in the Galleon Fight

A Big Thank You to You

I’m always humbled and amazed by the response to my blog and to my segments, and if I haven’t taken the time to thank all of you for stopping by from time to time I apologize for getting lost in the weeds. So from the bottom of this old warlock’s heart, I want to say thank you for reading and listening. Thanks for enjoying the World of Warcraft, the wonderful warlock class and for joining me on the journey…no matter where the adventure may lead /em bows

Emails I’d like to share

I love emails because it’s like a box of chocolates…you never know what you’re going to get and I really do enjoy them all :) So here’s a few I’ve received that I thought you’d enjoy too.

Hi Amijade

Been listening to your segments on The Instance and CTR for a while now and they’ve been pretty good, but I’ve been having a small niggle at the back of my mind on them that I figured wouldn’t hurt to email you about – it’s your use of the term Global Cooldown (GCD) as opposed to Cooldown (CD), especially in calling Infernals/Doomguards a 10 minute GCD, and the T90 talents 1 and 2 minute GCDs.

The GCD is separate but similar to the actual CD of a spell. Most spells trigger the GCD (but not all), and most spells have a CD or resource cost. The case in point is that if casting Infernal triggered a 10 minute GCD then you would not be able to cast any spell that was on the GCD (read: most of your spells) for 10 minutes! (and, same logic to 1 minute GCD on Kiljaden’s Cunning and 2 minute GCD on Archimonde’s Vengeance.) I’ll explain further.

The standard GCDs is 1.5 seconds, some modifications to this – some classes have a base GCD of 1.0 seconds (Rogues, DKs etc). Spellcasters (but not melee) get to lower their GCD with haste. Some other things affect the GCD – you may remember back in the old long-style talent trees there was a Warlock talent that lowered the GCD of curses, letting you cast them 0.5 seconds quicker when they were already instant cast. This is an example of something that has no CD on use, but is still on the GCD.

So we now know that most abilities trigger the GCD, and can have a separate cooldown of their own (such as Infernal etc). A few more examples to clarify the difference between the GCD and CDs: a Warrior’s Heroic Strike has a CD of 1.5 seconds, but is not on the GCD, so you can hit HS at the same time as any ability that is on the GCD and they can go off at the same time. Most defensive cooldowns (see most tanking CDs) are not on the GCD, but have long cooldowns, between 1-3 minutes.

So, in future, it might be better to say “X ability has a Y minute cooldown, and ; on the Global cooldown” – this is a lot more accurate than calling the CD of the spell it’s GCD, and can give some pretty valuable information..I haven’t played a Warlock myself since Wrath, so I can’t call any specifics on what abilities you have that are off the GCD (since the changes in Cata, and Mists), but I don’t doubt you’ll have some on your bars and even if there are no class specific off the GCD abilities for locks, there’s still on-use trinkets. Knowing what abilities you can stack together in the same button press or press at the same time because they’re off the GCD is important for playing your class well.

Thanks for reading,

Josh

Yep, Josh did a great job of calling me out on a mistake I didn’t realize I was making. Thanks Josh, I’d hate to confuse anyone on what I mean and you’re right, I meant the Cooldown (CD) and not the Global Cooldown (GCD). Sometimes, I use the terms as one in the same – bad habit I know and I’ll do my best not to make it again.

The heat of a world boss battle for life and loot

Here’s another:

Hey Amijade, you’re despicable – I heard about warlockery.com from The Instance podcast. I drew this picture and used digital techniques to color, but i thought you might like it, considering that he’s a warlock just like you. Amijade, say hello to an Aztec Warlock. If you like this picture, you can find more digital art at My Website.

Great pic! I love the Shadow Bolt’s flying off his hands!

I’m not in the music video, those are my friends. I liked the song so i posted it on my site. And i don’t really play WoW, but when i was little, my dad played it a lot, and he let me try out his Night Elf Druid every once in a while (but warlocks are pretty epic, too). I listen to the Instance because i like to keep up with WoW, and to get new ideas for my games. Tell Hukrath i said hello. Hey, don’t you think it would be cool if (in a MoP patch) warlocks could summon Sha demons? The Sha are basically demons made of negative emotions, so when your warlock inflicts shadow damage or something, he could build up some kind of dark energy that he could use to summon a Sha!

Alugo

I have respect for anyone that can draw, especially at an early age. I have no skill for drawing at all. My stick figures are pitiful. Alugo rocks it. I’m sure with his passion, it will take him far in creating and designing video the games of the future. Just remember Alugo, a good game simply needs to be fun. You’re writing someone who played the game “Pong” when he was your age and loved it. If you don’t know what “Pong” is then look it up and laugh at me now. Trust me, I wasted a lot of hours on that game cranking it up on a 13” black and white TV thinking it was pretty cool back in the day :)

When a battle grows silent

and another:

Amijade,

Warlocks are despicable and I think you are despicable too! Do you do the demon voice or do you have a friend do it? I like Hukrath and think you should use him more in your spots or maybe use a different demon too. If you do the Observer, you could just make the licking noises. I still think that’s nasty because you never know where that person has been.

Tyrinia

Thanks Tyrinia! Having been a warlock for so long, I often see being called despicable as a badge of honor. Hukrath, my voidwalker, is actually voiced by me and gets the cool minion like sound when I use the magic of a free audio recording program called Audacity. I add a few special effects to my voice recording and then use a technique known Reverse Reverb. That’s it :) I thought about trying to use a different demon voice, but trust me when I say that I can’t sound like a Succubus or a Shivarra no matter how hard I try. Impersonating one of the other demons might work and I just might try that. Although, it would be difficult to give up using Hukrath, he’s been with me since the beginning and if the truth be told – I think people enjoy hearing him more than me! Ha! I’m not kidding and your email is proof of that!

Back in the saddle again

I plan to get another post out this weekend to review some of the changes to warlocks in the next patch. Woot! They sound deli-cious and I don’t know about you, but I’m really looking forward to running the “Warlock only” quest line. We got some new glyphs and another new spell. So much to talk about and so much to do!

After our guild memorial walk from the Tomb of the Fallen Warrior all the way back to Orgrimmar, we celebrate life with friends by flying around the city. I can’t remember if I posted this shot before or not, but it’s still impressive. I only wish you could see the number of flying mounts that were above me!

Until next time, hug your family a little bit tighter, call an old friend just to catch-up and let them know you’re glad they’re in your life….trust me on that one /bows in silence

Hail My Fellow Warlocks!

As we all continue to hammer away at rep grinds, dailies and getting our item levels up, I want us to take the time to discuss two things for this post. First, I’ll give a rundown on our last level 90 talent known as Mannoroth’s Fury. The second thing I think we should address are concerns over numbers. Before I get to those two important topics please let me give you a quick rundown of what I’ve been doing in game since many of you have been asking in emails and with DMs on Twitter.

Btw, please feel free to contact me anytime. I’m enjoying all the great warlock camaraderie that I see going on, and every time someone sends me an email or DM that starts with “Hey Amijade, you’re despicable” it really makes my day! So thank you for all of your responses /em bows humbly

I always get choked up at ceremonies!

A quick wrap up of what I have been doing in MoP so far:

  • Dailies, Dailies and more Dailies
  • Rep grinds
  • Tending the farm
  • Raising my baby cloud serpent
  • Heroics when I can (ilevel 460 now), but no scenarios, raiding, or pet battles yet

In fact, I’ve been having so much fun on my warlock that I’ve completely neglected both my hunter and shaman and sadly they both sit at level 85. For me, that says a lot. I plan to change that soon and start leveling them up as well, but I’ll have to blame Blizzard for this because I’m enjoying the love of my lock immensely!

Taking my new mount out for our first flyover!

I’ve run the heroics and not the raid or scenarios. Why only heroics? For raiding, I’m waiting for the rest of my raid team to catch up. Not all are quite at level 90 yet, but I’m sure in the next week or two almost all will be there. For scenarios, I plan to find a good team to go in there one night per week and go for the gold, or the silver I don’t care which really. I just think it’ll be fun running for the challenge and I don’t want to ruin them with a pug group, ha! I just know from my pug time in ZA / ZG that a bad pug can ruin your attitude towards something that should be fun.

Sadly, I haven’t done Pet Battles yet either. Why? Because too many in-game friends tell me it’s addicting and they love it, and trusting their opinions I know I will too. I’ll probably love it a lot. So I made myself a promise that when all three of my mains are up to cap then I’ll dive right into Poke’ WoW. Until then, I’ll be getting all three of my main’s raid ready, along with having their professions and reps maxed. If you’ve guessed that I’m OCD then you’d probably be right :)

What about all of you? What are you liking or not liking about the expansion? Are you a pet battling fiend like my friends? What spec on your lock are you running? Currently, I’m running Affliction as my MS and Destro as OS. For our Demo brethren please don’t feel that I’m discounting it. Trust me, I know it’s fun too and I’ll probably run with it again at some point; however, I ran Demo mainly in beta so I’m giving it a rest for a few weeks. I think @eljeppy from CtrlAltWoW Podcast said it best when he told me he really liked Demo and said it felt like “Impmaggedon” when his imps proc and he has a screen full of them. I love that description, don’t you?

Now, let’s get on with the good stuff!

MF sits in the lower right side of our talent window

Mannoroth’s Fury in all it’s glory

It’s amazing to me that we’ve reached the last level 90 talent that we’ll be discussing. OMG, time flies so fast! I remember finally hitting level cap in the beta back in May and being excited to try out all three of the 90 talents, and now here we are in early October and we’re discussing their live implementation. /em chortles ruthlessly

Mannoroth’s Fury – Simple enough, eh? It increases the area of your AoE spells by 500%. Hrm, many would think that this would only be things like Rain of Fire, or Seed of Corruption, or Hellfire, but wait… there’s more! Hold the cheers please until I give out the full list and here it is:

  • Soulburn: Curses (All of Them)
  • Metemorphasis Curse Spells
  • Chaos Wave
  • Hand of Gul’dan
  • Fire and Brimstone
  • Harvest Life
  • Immolation Aura
  • Rain of Fire
  • Seed of Corruption
  • Soul Burn: Seed of Corruption
  • Shadowfury

(If I left out a spell that might benefit from MF, please let me know because I’m sure there might be one I’ve missed!)

When your applause dies down, and your excitement tempers please keep in mind that while a 500% area increase for AoE sounds huge in the cryptic language of Blizzard’s spell descriptions, Mannoroth’s Fury is really only about a 145% increase when talented mathematicians compute out the numbers. Over at Wowhead on the Mannoroth’s Fury page, Alnair has a great write up on the subject in the discussions section. I’d recommend you give it a gander! For example, as Alnair points out that a spell such as Shadowfury with an 8 yard range only increases to almost 20 yards. 

Full screen shot of our Rain of Fire spell reticule with Mannoroth’s Fury talented

From the picture above we can compare it to the normal size distance below to give you an idea of the difference…

This is the exact same view only this time MF wasn’t talented showing you the standard size of the Rain of Fire spell reticule

As you can already guess because you’re all smart and very bright (c’mon you chose a warlock so how could you not be?) Mannoroth’s Fury will be a great boon to fights where lots of trash needs to be burned down quickly. It’s pretty easy peasy right? You bet it is! Just please, for the love of all that’s Hellfire and Fel flame…please don’t overdo it! The last thing we want to do is aggro everything in site and have every tank in the game crying about hating to run with warlocks. That kind of play style doesn’t do any of us any good in any way what-so-over. So my advice is to never be that kind player! For any PvE (scenarios, dungeons, raids) make sure your tank has a good handle on what he plans to pull and where he plans to pull safely before you begin to light up the room making things go boom! 

I’m sure for PvPers the Mannoroth’s Fury Talent can mean delicious peril to your foes when capturing a flag, control point or helping your team to zerg the enemy when heavy, grouped fighting is needed! Bah! If only I had this in WSG and AB when there wasn’t a time limit! Yes I know, I really do need to make more time for PvP because this talent would make me cackle laugh so much my family would think I’d gone insane…well, I should say more insane.

Mannoroth’s Fury is a good talent option to have, just remember for PvE to use it wisely and carefully. For PvP you should abuse mages it as much as possible and if a mage just so happens to be in the group your fighting against the better!

It all comes down to perspective :)

Now for the second part of the post where I’m going to discuss numbers. *Sighs* This next discussion might even be considered a small rant on my part…

Number crunching and you

As warlocks, we all strive to do the best dps that we can. That’s understandable and a great goal to strive towards. Sadly, I often watch as the recordings of the addon RECOUNT are tossed around like the be all and end all of a fight. The same goes with many sites that do number crunching and theory crafting. RECOUNT and these sites are great tools to use. Always keep them in the perspective of what they are…effective tools at analyzing information.

The reason I bring up the topic of dps numbers is not to degrade these resources, but because I’ve heard several warlocks having concerns over where some of the numbers are falling in regards to their main specs. Some of the theory sites have people upset or depressed that their spec isn’t on top or hitting the par with the other specs. Some have even considered switching their specs! If you’re in one of the 100 top ranked guilds I might say go for it – go with the cutting edge, but if you’re like me you probably aren’t up there at the top and to squeeze out the extra dps from one spec to another won’t be that huge of a issue. Let me explain why…

The human element and random situations

Are resources like RECOUNT and theory crafting / SimC sites useful? Yes. Are they 100% accurate? Based on the numbers they use I’d say yes, but based on how the game is played I’d say no. Here’s some reasons for my opinion and why I think that despite all they math and theory you still have to put them into the context of live play. First, in any fight whether it’s PvE or PvP there’s always the human factor. I’ve never seen a fight go down exactly the same way, ever. Yes, the end result is usually that the boss dies and loot drops, but every single time something different and random always happens in between the pull and when a boss drops. I’ve seen tanks forget to pop a gcd, healers running out of mana because the raid didn’t move fast enough, too many mobs can get pulled, someone stood in the bad stuff and died, someone DC’d, heroism/bloodlust was popped too soon or too late, or a battle rez was still on gcd when it was needed and I could go on and on about how random things occur all the time. 

The demons are in the details

Another reason not to get too bent out of shape in regards to numbers is that they don’t take into consideration all of the nuances of the fight. Sometimes fights are melee friendly and range loses out! Sometimes it’s the reverse. Some fights are heal intensive. Sometimes fights tank intensive. Let’s not forget fights with lots of movement. Or how about fights with wide ranging crazy mechanics? I hope you see what I mean, and understand the point I’m trying to make in not worrying too much about numbers. Use them as a guide to strive to better your toon, but don’t let them get you down or make you consider playing a different spec.

Patches, Nerfs and Buffs

Blizzard giveth, and Blizzards taketh away. Patches occur quite often and the developers are always making tweaks here and there, buffing some and nerfing others. It’s going to happen and it’s not going to end so just expect it and move on. What one website said about the optimal dps four months ago might be off substantially by next patch if not already. Trust me, I’ve played a warlock a long time and ask any seasoned lock and they’ll talk about the great times and the bad. Brief moments of when we were on top looking like rock stars, and then the other times when we were nerfed to the ground. The same kinds of stories about “glory days” and the “rough times” can be told through the eyes of any class in Warcraft. Every class has these issues and not just our wonderful warlocks.

The only advice I can give you

I’m an old warlock. I’ve done a lot of things and I’ve seen a lot of things. I’ve made a lot of mistakes and I’ve learned a lot too. I’ve roamed and explored from the wild frontiers of vanilla WoW all the way to it’s amazing new continent of Pandaria and everything else in between. If there’s any advice I can ever give to another warlock that is of any value what-so-ever it all boils down to this: Have fun and don’t ever let static numbers dictate your enjoyment of playing the game or in being a good player. The numbers will and have always changed from highs to lows, from lows to highs, from class to class, and from spec to spec. The only thing that matters truly in the end is “Do you want to login?” and “Are you having fun?”. It’s your time, your money, and your toon so go out there and get your money’s worth!

Sorry for the rant everyone, but I think this issue of “what’s hot” and “what’s not” needs to be addressed. I’m sure that you, like me, understand that many high end guilds fight for their spots in the rankings and take the game quite seriously when it comes to raiding. I wish nothing but the best to those folks and I salute them for their dedication and effort. It’s a lot of work to remain that dedicated and on the cutting edge of game play. However, most of us aren’t in the top 100 rankings and if I see another lower level warlock talking in guild chat or in trade chat telling everyone that they are switching from the spec they like play to a different spec that they dislike because they read somewhere that the spec they don’t like is doing the highest dps atm, I think I’m going to scream! Does anyone agree with me? Can I get a halelujah someone? I know I can’t be the only person that thinks this way!

What about all of you? Is spec switcing to the highest theory crafted dps that important to you? Please, let me know because I’m curious as to why I am seeing this type up discussion so much lately. It really does boggle my mind :)

This pic has nothing to do with this post, but I thought I erased it by accident and I’m really happy that I found it! Ha! It still makes me smile!

Hail Everyone,

It’s been almost two weeks now since the new Expansion hit, and I’m sure many of you are either at cap or getting ready to ding 90! So over the next few posts, I’d like to take a look at each of the three level 90 talents ‘locks get to consider when choosing their arsenal of differentiating play styles. This week, I’m going to talk about one of my favorite of the three. Kil’jaeden’s Cunning (KJC) has both an “on use” benefit like a trinket and a set passive ability.

So without further ado, let’s read over what the tooltip says:

Kil’jaeden’s Cunning (KJC) – As an active use this Instant cast spell is on a 1 min gcd. You can cast and channel while moving for 6 sec. As a passive ability, you can cast and channel while moving, but doing so increases the cast time or channel period of the spell by 50%. Each cast reduces your movement speed by 10%, stacking up to 2 times. This effect is disabled while on cooldown.

I love this talent! You will too!

Don’t forget the “on use” ability

First, using KJC as an “on use” ability gives us a quick way to cast and move without any type of dps loss or any type of movement debuff. This will become especially useful the more you become familiar with each dungeon boss and it’s mechanics. Getting into the habit of using the active use of KJC will serve you well for both dungeons and in PvP. I understand that the active KJC may seem as too short of a duration that it might even appear pointless. Don’t be fooled into thinking it’s not worth utilizing. The trick I’ve come to find is to make sure that you use it, often. Let me repeat that last line for a greater effect, the trick I’ve come to find is to make sure that you use it, often!

The more you get in the habit of popping this spell’s “on use” benefit the more nimble we become. It sounds simple enough, but trust me when I say that it can be easily to forget. The reason it’s “on use” ability is easy to forget is because it’s passive ability can make you, me and every warlock lazy. It’s too easy to just let the “on use” ability sit untouched while relying on the passive. I know I’ve found myself saying, “Oh, I just have to move a little bit this time to stay out of an AoE so I’ll just save it for when I really need it” and then the fight ends and you realize that the moment you could have used the KJC “on use” ability has passed you by.

If you find yourself in that same dilemma, then rip the Kil’jaeden’s Cunning spell button off of your spell bar and place it somewhere when you can see it, click it or key bind it faster. From there, make it a new personal goal to use KJC “on use” ability at every opportunity you can. Trust me, you’ll be glad you did.

Using the KJC passive for better positioning when needed – I’ll take snakes over spiders anyday even if it’s an elite!

Kil’jaeden’s Cunning passive ability

I have to admit that I love the Kil’jaeden’s Cunning passive. Being able to move and cast is a great boon, but keep in mind that it’s also a double edged sword. The passive gives us the ability to kite mobs, and to move away from danger and damage at a cost. It’s a nice passive to have as long as you use it sparingly, otherwise your dps will suffer. I personally enjoy using the KJC passive while questing and while in dungeons. When the “on use” ability is on gcd then it’s beneficial to be able to spare my healer some mana by moving out of damage quickly. It’s adds an advantage for better positioning myself if a tank line of sights a mob or if I need a better view of what’s going when analyzing the situation when fights get crazy and chaotic.

To reach our optimal dps always keep in mind that as warlocks are casting turrets. You’ve probably heard the term a “casting turret”, or “dps turret” before. This old definition reinforces a problem all casters have had in the past with regards to movement. You can’t do damage unless you’re standing still. Makes sense right? Well, both versions of the Kil’jaeden’s talent has changed that old paradox. Yes, we can now cast and move at a cost, but standing still while dishing out the pain is still the best way to fight. So please keep the idea of a casting turret in mind when you are considering running around a dungeon non-stop at a movement and dps drops. Sadly, I’ve seen this happen in a dungeon already. In one run I watched as a Destro luck was jumping around like a rogue with his pants on fire. He wasn’t a bad player and while I’m sure he thought he was cool jumping around like a maniac during all the commotion, I can’t help but to think it wasn’t the wisest choice. Was he having fun acting crazy? Probably. It’s hard to pass judgment on this ‘lock because it’s their $15.00 monthly fee to play that way. Was it wrong or right of him to do so? I’ll let you be the judge on that one.

For me however, watching this hyperactive Desto lock’s antics gave me pause as to how I view my own role when I’m on my warlock. As a powerhouse dps class our role is to take down mobs fast and to bring our utility when needed. The lower your dps, the longer it takes to accomplish this task and the more likelihood that things can go wrong are given a greater chance to occur. Relying too heavily on the freedom of movement at a dps loss is tough not to abuse due to it’s seductive, enticing and passive nature. I know that I for one, will strive to only use the KJC passive when it’s truly needed. When I’m questing and kiting mobs for fun it’s one thing, when I’m in a dungeon helping to complete a task and keeping people alive while taking down a boss it’s another. I hope you can see the difference too. 

Ready to start a day of dailies

Don’t lose sight of other warlock movement tricks

Don’t forget we have other ways to get around that pesky movement problem. First, there is our Demonic Circle. By far I see our Demonic Circle as the most under-utilized spell by our class. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen a tank pull a boss only to watch as the progression of the fight was underway, and a warlock took massive damage or died simply due to the fact they didn’t put up their portal and use it. Trust me, while playing my healer I’ve seen it happen a lot! Demonic Circle is your friend, it’s a cool mechanic and it’s a warlock life saver! Use it, abuse it and make us proud!

Another aid for warlocks in regards to movement is to never forget about using your Fel Flame. Fel flame is quick, it’s great for DoT renewal and it won’t handcuff you with any debuffs towards your movement speed or in your spell cast time. For short movement spurts such as strafing out of AoE, Fel Flame is another good choice to use as well.

Things to ponder about movement

Everything that deals with movement in fights should be something for you to consider. Think carefully about all of our tools such as Demonic Circle, Fel Flame, the Kil’jaeden’s Cunning “on use”, or our KJC passive, and even perhaps to do nothing at all other than the act of moving itself. Is there a right way or a wrong way? No, there isn’t. Once again the designers at Blizzard have made anything we encounter in game very situational. As we strive to better ourselves and our class, always remember that the more you experiment and familiarize your talents, spells and skills…the better your timing, your situational awareness, your dps and your benefit to the group will become!

Oh, how they grow so fast! My best advice about raising a baby dragon is to take lots of screenshots and to wash your hands after cleaning up after them :)

Hail Everyone,

I hope you, like me, got to take part in the launch of the Mists of Pandaria Expansion. If you haven’t had the opportunity to do so for whatever reason, no worries. I’m sure MoP will be around a while for you to enjoy so have fun catching up when you can. It’s an amazing new experience with enough great places to visit and enough things to do, to keep even the most dedicated adventurers busy for quite some time.

Since the next two weeks are going to be quite busy for everyone, with leveling their mains, alts and getting your reps up, I’ve decided to try to keep this week’s post short and sweet. Since this is my fourth launch of a new expansion I took a few moments to reflect on the MoP launch and try to gleam a nugget of wisdom from the experience to find out why I consider them so much fun and exciting.

So, here’s my list:

Exploring and Adventuring is fun

For some, not having the ability to use their flying mounts was reason to despair. For me? It was a great time to take in all the sites and learn all of the new areas in regards to where things were in relation to the continent. Finding little caves, nooks and crannies…oh the joys of being lost in the world again with that sense of OMG what’s around the next corner? I find exploring brings back a sense of awe and wonder knowing that in the big scheme of things, I’m but a small blip on the map giving you a great perspective not only in game, but in life as well.

Watching people on the wrong boat for the starter quest made me laugh, only because I made the same mistake in beta :)

The “danger is everywhere element” makes the game exciting

Ever get ganked by a few mobs that add? Had a few quests where you had to strategize on how to get in and out of an area without dying? Back in the days of Vanilla, and early on in BC this “danger” element seemed to be more difficult than either Wotlk or Cataclysm IMHO. Luckily, the leveling process wasn’t a complete faceroll and it wasn’t long waits at the Spirit Healer either. I think MoP had just the right mix to keep you on your toes. Needless to say, I’ve gotten a lot of good practice with my AoE skills. Having the “danger” element always looming in the back of you mind makes the game more exciting to me.

I might have been gathering some as simple as Green Tea Leaves, but many times a patrol or adds would join the fight against me making my victory of finally gathering an object seem worthwhile and like a small treasure. That’s right! I fought for it and it’s mine! Woot! Yes, I know a Green Tea Leaf isn’t a huge payoff…but taking on five mobs to pick it was!

Exploring is fun, especially from the comfy view of a pandaren pulled cart

The love in learning

There is the old, tried and true catch phrase, “You’re never too old to learn new things.” It’s so true! If anyone tells you different they are flat out lying. Like one of the mountainous peaks in Kunlai Summit, the learning curve for everything in the game has become quite steep again. Where’s the quest giver again? How do I finish this task? What mats should I keep? Where is the nearest mailbox? Having to learn so many new things really keeps you on your toes. The learning curve is also a great way to interact with your guildies and other players when seeking information or in just passing a long some of your own.

Having the difficulty bar reset up a notch has been a great time to bring people together to overcome new obstacles, and I for one know that I’m really enjoying that aspect of the game. Once again with the launch of a new expansion, Blizzard has taken one of the longest running MMORPG’s and has reinvented it all over again. The Mists of Pandaria expansion is new, it’s exciting and it’s a breath of fresh air.

There are shady character both in-game and IRL. The trick is knowing how to deal with them!

There’ll always be jerks, always

It’s a sad fact that there are others out in the world who find it amusing to be mean and cruel both in game and IRL. I personally cannot understand that reasoning or that sick enjoyment, and I’m pretty sure it will always be beyond my grasp to comprehend it. Don’t get me wrong. If I get on a PvP field, or if I find another player intentionally flagging themselves looking for a fight I plan to abuse them because it’s all in good fun. However, there’s a time and place for everything.

Ever seen a moron blocking a quest giver with a mount so people can’t complete their quests? What about a full team? I experienced this problem first hand right at the start of the expansion launch, so I did what any good player should do and that was to report them. Yes, I now there is the Target NPC function, but that only works if you know the quest giver’s name and why should anyone have to do a search on Wowhead just because some moron is being a jerk on a Mammoth?

I’m a pretty tolerant person; however, when push comes to shove and I find myself dealing with an idiot griefer I have no qualms of turning to the Report option. If enough people used this function of the game, it might squelch this type of behavior. We can only hope it will and I’m sure Blizzard takes these reports seriously. For me, to sit back and do nothing simply allows them to think that bad behavior is acceptable and that such behavior has no consequences. 

Makes new friends, but keep the old…one is silver and the other is green?

Being with friends is always more fun

I ran both solo, and in a few groups during the launch and I can testify that questing with friends is always better. Yes, I solo play from time to time when I want to just chill-out, but for a launch it’s always better to go in as a team. You’ll have more fun being with your friends to share the new experiences and you’ll have each other to depend on when things get tough. Having good friends in game is every bit as important as having good friends in real life.

I’d like to give a personal shout-out to Megacode, Desdeny and Cirol. A fine group of folks with whom I had the honor to group with from time to time during the first day of craziness! I think Cirol and myself were able to nab about 6 Rare Elites alone. NPC_Scan and Eye of Kilrogg ftw!

New adventures, new memories and new mounts! Woot!

Something to look forward to

The new expansion and all that it offers can be summed up quite easily, it gives us something to look forward to doing. It challenges us. It keeps us learning. It keeps us focused at working towards personal and group goals, and it gives us plenty of fun. For all of the talented people over at Blizzard, I can only hope they continue to keep up the great work. As I sit here and write this post the question struck me as to what the next expansion after Mists of Pandaria might bring? Then the thought was quickly gone from my head as I thought about having to feed my baby Cloud Serpent, tending the weeds in my new garden, and seeing all of the new dungeons bosses I have yet to meet. Yes, I’m sure I’ll think about the next expansion after MoP some time in the future…right now, I’m just having to much fun in Pandaria.

Have a great week and enjoy!