Timewalking and keeping busy

I’m not actually a huge fan of the Timewalking dungeons. It’s a nice concept but it’s only good to catch up gear on alts that just dinged max level, although the chest at the end can be nice. This week there’s also a special thing where you can get a +2 Timewalking Mythic keystone, that’s more interesting, as that counts as Timewalking AND you get a Great Vault reward.

I didn’t plan to run as many, but now I did 5 on Hunter and DK, and 4 on Shaman. Guess I should do 5 on my main Warrior, but meh.

This year I was lucky and got a mount, though.

Infinite Timereaver, yay!

Also what happens if you’re semi-afk and not paying attention? People from the M+ crowd spamming you on Discord for 10 minutes because no one else is on and then you end up running M+ for 4h straight. Was some nice healing practice and higher keys for my main though, lucky day.

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #11.

The annoying things you’d already forgotten

Rant incoming. I guess I’m in a bit of a WoW binge at the moment (completed the “run 4 Mythic dungeons for a shiny item” on four toons, went to a few old raids for transmogs, caught up on a few very old achievements) and I’m currently really, really, really annoyed that progress isn’t shared.

Sure, back when I had one main on Horde from Vanilla to Pandaria it was all no problem (well except doing Heal and Tank Challenge Mode) and of course my main had all of them, but I mained an Alliance Demon Hunter in Legion, an Alliance Paladin in BfA, and an Alliance Warrior in Shadowlands while still doing some rep grinds on my old main. Yeah, now it’s a complete clusterfuck, especially with the four covenants in Shadowlands where I kinda have one “main” for the sake of Covenant stuff/zone and also sometimes one char is just more progressed on one daily/World Quest than the other. There’s no really good way to track this either, I need to do the parasol WQ 5 times more on one toon, 6 times more on another, good luck remembering that without a spreadsheet – why can’t it be 10 in total?

The other thing is the cross-realm thing, and while I don’t begrudge the people who can now happily use their toons, why did this only come in 2022? I did not have any meaningful presence on the Alliance side except one Rogue until 2014 and then after my return I levelled up at least one of every class there. And in general (and I agree this is my fault) I could’ve transferred some of them earlier when I switched to the German server where I’m playing now, but now I’m kinda stuck with all my Horde toons with shitty equip on my original server, five more 60s (two of them important to me) on that same server, but Alliance side. I already paid for the 8 transfers bundle (and used up 6), but still. Why did I have to leave all my Horde legacy behind from late 2016 until early 2022, and now – even mid-expansion- I could’ve finally continued to use them?

So yes, it’s my own fault, but in contrast to FFXIV (lame, always a comparison with this game) – nothing here would’ve been my own fault except if I had wanted to reroll on a different server group, and then I would have 2 characters to maybe transfer, but realistically not needing to do it, and not one per class and faction. Hell, I’d gladly accept 12 transfers over 24.

And the last pet peeve, I love how the Armory keeps track of your boss kills from older expansions… just that you’re never allowed to go in there again for transmogs if you want to conserve e.g. your original Pandaria raid progression, which means I always need to farm transmogs on alts of the same class (I’m lucky that only Trial of the Crusader had faction-specific sets afaik), but I will admit that this is 100% a me problem and only really affects Rogue/Warrior/Shaman, but I’m not actually collecting transmogs on SO many classes and I have enough Rogues and Warriors.

So, what’s the point now? I don’t know what Dragonflight will be and if I will play, and then which toon – I will probably stick to an Alliance char in my guild just for logistical reasons and because the damage is done and I’m now attached to some of them already as well. The achievement thing is probably digging up which character has the best progression already, per achievement, and continue from there… or just not bother at all, which seems to be the best course of action, really.

Can I really change anything about this? No. Is it my own fault? To some degree, I could’ve just tried to find a Horde guild. But having moved to a guild where my friends play (and it is Alliance), that’s not my fault – this is squarely on Blizzard’s asinine imagined conflict thing, and all the per-character stuff plays against that as well. I guess that’s enough ranting, in the end I’m still having fun playing the game, but I would have invested so much fewer hours… so I guess it is indeed in their best interest to keep the people busy… until it’s enough and they quit.

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #10.

That Retail and Classic bundle

It’s good to read about people liking the bundle of WoW Retail + Classic (Shintar in this case) because I agree that it’s a really good deal for both the company and the players. I don’t even want to imagine how numbers would look for each of the games without the other, guess there would be huge dips, depending on the patch cycle. And I’m saying that while not being sold on XBox Game Pass, but for other reasons – but multiple MMOs by the same studio? Good. Multiple versions of the same game? Mandatory.

Anyway, I’m just getting that out of the way, because there’s no way I would have been paying a single Euro for Classic in the last months (or a year?), but on the weekend I actually logged in my 69 Druid (stranded in Area 52) and maybe make a little progress towards 70. But when I had patched up again and logged in I saw that I was only at around 10% towards the final level and then it hit me again how tedious I found Classic. Which wouldn’t have been a problem if I had anything to look forward to, but I don’t. I don’t plan to play WotLK Classic, I don’t want to raid at 70 (if I made it), I don’t even want to collect gear, I especially don’t want to grind reps. If I could have an old backup copy of my toons at a WotLK savepoint I’d maybe go try raiding, but no way I’m falling into this trap a third time…

So, maybe I will work up some motivation to do those last 90% with the 50% XP buff, maybe I won’t.

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #9.

Random grouping

This week there’s this weekly quest up where you need to run 4 “Mythic” dungeons, M0 counts though.

When I got roped into an M+ by the guild they of course did not tell me, but we ran an M0 after that, so my Shammy is sitting at 1/4 now at least.

This afternoon I wanted to run those with my DK, but opted for Unholy. First one was Taza’vesh and today I learned a few things. First of all that the “Forged Credentials” thing makes it a little harder, but you get a mount in the end. And for the dungeon to count you need to do Streets and Gambit, not sure if Gambit alone counts. But I got a mount, even if it took an hour – and doing the Hylbrande console thing for the first time is actually hard, messed it up somehow.

Second run was Halls with an Outlaw Rogue with unbelievable damage, but the rest of us was kinda bad and they tried to skip trash that we then still pulled. Onto the boss.

Third run was Necrotic Wake and was quick and uneventful, the last one was Plaguefall and kinda ok, except a weird near-wipe because we had Tentacles where I’d never seen them, maybe a M0 thing?

Maybe I was lucky that I didn’t meet any real idiots but it was still more tedious than running a +15 with the guild (last season’s +15, maybe +11 now).

Anyway, I’m not actually sure getting this 291 item (meh item as well) was worth the 2-2.5h. I mean, on the upside I could replace 2 252 rings with 262/268 ones and got Head/Shoulders/Chest, but don’t have enough flux to upgrade them all, especially 259 -> 262 isn’t worth it. If the 291 had been a Tier slot piece or a Weapon however… It did dampen my enthusiasm to run 7 or 6 more of those, but let’s see how I feel about that tomorrow or if we’ll run some after the raid tonight.

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #8.

Looter Shooters are weird

I’ve probably written more than once that I don’t actually like the concept of a Looter Shooter, and that I enjoy Borderlands more despite of the fact than because of it. OK, the case can be made that with a plethora of different weapons I might more easily find my favourite… but then again, back when I played Quake I also found my favourites easily even if there were just 5 of them, I just don’t like the slow progression in single player of only getting a new one every few levels.

Anyway. Azuriel wrote about Necromunda: Hired Gun and there’s this one sentence (ok, two sentences):

As mentioned previously, this is also a looter-shooter. You will acquire a lot of incrementally more powerful guns that you can customize with various mods and relics.

And it clicked and I had an epiphany. “incrementally more powerful” and “customize”. I don’t object to incremental upgrades at all, but the modding is annoying busywork for me. I prefer to make the most of what the game gives me, hopefully playtested and balanced a bit. I don’t actually want to find the one gamebreaking combo and I also don’t want to use the 70% effective weapon. Why would I willingly take a break from the (hopefully) enjoyable gameplay of running and shooting (and looting is fine as well) to fiddle with mods? Ugh.

So hear me out, here’s my idea. You have a classic looter shooter but I have a “Destroy this looted item” button and I get a bit of currency/spare parts that I can simply use with one click to improve my current weapon. No mods, no fiddling, just make the number go up. Bonus points for a Path of Exile-inspired loot filter that will auto-consume all grey and green loot and just keep the blue and purple ones for inspection. Now THAT would solve half my problems with looter shooters. The automatic juicing wouldn’t even have to be optimal, and it wouldn’t have to be the exclusive mode.. it’s just the lazy bastard way of playing such a game.

Does this exist already and I have missed it?

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #7.

Previews and Alphas and excitement

Everyone who is mildly interested in WoW might have noticed that the Alpha has started, talent trees are being released, new Alpha builds are released, and so on.

On the one hand I’m following the topic with a low amount of interest, but for example last night I looked at the Warrior Talent Tree and my interest instantly vanished. So many talents, I don’t feel knowledgeable enough to spec out a good build – but then again history has shown that not all talents that sound good are indeed good and ones that sound bad aren’t secretly good. Maybe I simply can’t muster up the hype for any of this anymore. If I read about this, I want to play it, but I don’t like playing Alphas or Betas either. Maybe I should simply stay away from the topic?

That said, I’m moderately looking forward to the new expansion – but I wouldn’t say I’m excited or even hyped. Maybe I’m old and boring but I guess I’ll just take a cookie cutter spec and then change the 2-3 things that annoy me, more of a top-down iterative approach over a bottom-up creative one.

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #6.

EVE and another war

A month (and a few days) have passed since I came back to EVE after a break that lasted around 9 months if you count undocking and still 5ish months if you count an active subscription.

And.. wow… I guess not a week had gone by until we learned that Fraternity (one of the three biggest alliances) had somehow declared war, or to be more exact they wanted to expand their borders and gobble up the region we and some other folks are living in, and our leadership declared that we don’t want to be surrounded and also we’d be sticking with our bluetral neighbors because that’s why we went independent, and not cozy up to a big bloc. And so they decided to come to Pure Blind first and not Deklein or Fade, which were supposed to be their original targets.

The funny thing is that Fraternity is very huge in China and their numbers in EUTZ and USTZ are kinda bad, so they hired a bunch of mercenaries to fight for them. No, we don’t really understand it either and we’re actively playing this game. Anyway, BRAVE has 8600 pilots, V0lta+Bl0b have around 3000, and the Greater Trash Coalition.. I simply don’t know, maybe another 2500 – and Fraternity has over 24000. Oh, and then now also the remaining people in TEST decided to join FRT and deploy/move here. At least PanFam (Pandemic Legion, Pandemic Horde, Northern Coalition) doesn’t seem to be very close to WinterCo (FRT etc.) anymore…

There was a big fight on July 9th where we fought back and since then it doesn’t really feel like we’re being invaded, which is good. Let’s hope we can hold out longer.

Anyway, that wasn’t actually what I wanted to write, that thing is that I noticed that for the amount I’ve been playing I look very inactive on zkill – so I decided to fix that and my first milestone is 1k kills on my main and I managed to get just over 100 on my main and around 30 on my alt – which at least brings me to nearly 550 combined. I don’t think I can keep up with the amount of fleets in August, but I’m trying my best. One problem is that we did quite a few special ops that lasted for 1-2h but gave no kill, so while I know the kills are just an easily gamed metric, it’s some sort of metric. (Killed 130, lost 15, not terrible).

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #5.

Season 4 M+ – First impressions

I hadn’t actually planned to do much last night, just weekly login of all toons, grab the quests, maybe have a go at the new old world boss with supposedly higher iLevel loot… when I got messages on discord to log my main and then being told I shouldn’t log through all toons so quickly when they want to message me 😛

Anyway, my +12 Streets keys was waved away and they really wanted to do that +16 Mechagon Workshop. Wasn’t fun, so we switched to +15. Still wasn’t exactly fun and took a lot of dying and trying out things, but we made it through with a lot of overtime, but that’s one 304 item in the vault secured. I had warned them that I only ever did the instance once, overleveled, but it’s not like I was the only one bumbling. Took like 80 minutes, but it wasn’t wasted time… but I think I should stick to a lot lower besides one weekly +15 for the gear, for now, at least until I know the fights. Also I guess we were criminally undergeared at our 273 to 278. And I think they only took me with them (it’s the +20 crew) because 3 of the big pumpers are on vacation, but I’m not complaining.

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #4.

Shadowlands goals, part 2

I’m not sure it was exactly a good idea, but I did manage to finish off 2 more WoW chars to 60 last night, even if it took until 1:30 my time. I hadn’t originally planned to take advantage of the 50% XP buff (and I’ll only find out if it’s really gone when I will login later today), but with my main goals reached it sounded like a fun challenge. Goblin Warrior (my third) and Void Elf Rogue (my fourth) are now at 60 and it’s a nice round number of 30 toons. In a totally random twist of fate I now have two of each class at 60, and then 3 Hunters, Death Knights, Paladins, Warriors, and 4 Rogues. I’ve never been a huge fan of Paladins and especially not DKs, but it kinda happened, mostly because of different servers and the sale on transfers coming much too late. Then again I kinda covered most of favorite classes this way, the only outliers being Shaman, Warlock, and Druid. Is it weird to have 6 favorite classes out of 12? Maybe.

Sounds like it’s time for a ranking, shall we?

Rogue/Warrior > Shaman > Hunter = Paladin =~ Warlock > Druid = Demon Hunter = Death Knight > Mage > Monk > Priest

I guess Retri/Prot Paladins have always been ok since TBC/WotLK, I only hated them in Vanilla. Warlock and Druid are classes I really like, but I feel I’m not as good without extensive effort, so they’re a little more tedious. DK and DH are not great, but solid most of the time. Frost Mages are either fun to play or meh, depending on the expansion. And I don’t think I’ll ever warm up to Monk or Priest (WotLK Disc was cool tho). Rogues would be perfect if they weren’t sometimes so squishy/not able to solo elites anymore. Also can’t tank, so I guess that’s why I’ve gone more towards Warrior for many years. I’m not sure I ever want to main a Hunter but I always enjoy playing them. Maybe stuck with Warrior for now…

Kinda funny how the one number (Level 60, yay!) is meaningful to the point that I level so many toons and the other – more important – number (iLevel, boo!) I don’t care at all. Never in the mood to grind out gear, especially not on alts. Catch up is fine, but actually putting in time and effort? Nah.

Also managed to sneak in a last M+ after the (short) raid and could upgrade my MH to 272 with 1000 of my 1035 Valor. Will be a win either way – either I will now have a 272 MH until a good one drops, or it will drop just because I upgrade. But the Valor would be converted to gold anyway, so nothing lost. Kinda shitty that I lose all my Valor on the Shaman, but she’s just not reached a high enough rating to upgrade stuff above 255.

Season 4 is starting today, and we’re only gonna raid on Sundays. Despite hardly missing a raid the last 3 tiers this expansion and the summer still going I’m probably not gonna try to schedule other stuff around the raid, but with it only being one day, me still not being keen on a lot of events with tons of people… and my friends basically never going out on a Sunday… I’ll probably still be able to attend most nights. Kinda glad it’s only one night as I’m not overly enthusiastic about repeating the content.

I have a low key plan/desire to heal more and also tank a little this season, but on the other hand I’m in a bit of a WoW lull right now. The Jailer AOTC kill wasn’t the grand finale I’d hoped for, with all the nerfs and then the “we gotta go fast” and then also not being able to rekill him (for lack of an ID) for our tank who missed the kill. Interestingly the tank itself seems to care the least for the missed achievement, but some of us still feel bad about it.

This was supposed to be a very short “yay, 30th Level 60 and made it just in time for S4” post, but sometimes you write a few words and your lunch break is over…

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #3.

Shadowlands goals

During the run of WoW’s 9.2 patch cycle (let’s call it the Zereth Mortis season) I ran quite a few chars through this daily zone. I mean, I also did a lot of other things, raids and M+, and so on – but for some reason I wanted to see this campaign done on all classes, and get my 265 Belt Legendary as a reward. Also the world boss dropped some items (better for Cloth and Plate, worse for Leather, worst for Mail) and with the Sandworn Relics you could buy low-level Tier pieces (or to be more exact, 246 items that could be converted to Tier pieces of the same level). Some hotfix patch just before Season 4 made them Bind-to-Account, so on Friday I could finish the last pieces.

  • One character per class (and faction) to Level 60 – long ago
  • One character per class to Renown 80 – done
  • One character per class completing the ZM campaign and get a Legendary – done
  • One character per class with the 4-set tier bonus – done
  • One character per class unlocking all 6 levels of the cypher – done **
  • One character per class at item level 252 or above – meh, only managed 8 of them

Yeah I know it’s kinda stupid, but I somehow enjoy some mindless grinds, often only 20 minutes after work for a very quick tour. I’d say I’m basically done with the alts for this expansion. We’ll see how Season 4 actually is and how many toons I want to actively play (it’s summer now after all), but I guess it won’t be that many.

  • Raiding: Warrior, unless we do alt runs, then maybe Shaman
  • M+: Warrior and probably Shaman, maybe tanking as Blood DK or Demon Hunter
  • collecting gear: not sure, no plans really.

I’m at 28 Level 60 chars and we have an XP buff running, so maybe getting to a nice round 30 would be an idea.

Maybe I’ll use the Sandworn Relics I have left to finish a few transmog sets, but unfortunately the LFR level ones are all some meh tone of mostly greens. The normal versions look so much better. I think I got all the reputations to Exalted on my main, but there are a few of the covenant special things I haven’t spent a lot of time with, although I’m 2/3 towards Exalted with the Stitchmasters, but I mostly ignored Revendreth and Bastion in that regard. I think I did all quest lines and I definitely unlocked all Heritage Armors that are ingame. I should have all professions at max level once as well.

**: ninja edit: 30 minutes after publishing this scheduled article I actually managed #12. Talk about timing.

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #2.