Tuesday, September 30, 2008

WotLK Beta: Grouping with Other Classes.

So far with all the new class changes I've had a chance to run or group with some of all the classes though not all. I can't say I've being in a group with a Shadow Priest or a DPS Warrior usually. But All my groups are PuGs. I'm not apart of any guild in Northrend just liking to go it alone and do other things as i feel so instancing are all random groups and invites.

Most the classes from that are in tBC I'm pretty much used to. Some classes more than others in a 5 man group as a Protection just works much better with some classes than others. Its a bit different seeing a Shaman with wolfs along in a fight and wondering where they came from as the tank, as bit different that is. But most classes seem the usual. Rets seem to work well in a groups that I'm in but that's still hard to tell when you can be busy tanking and learning Dungeons and mob tactics.

Biggest class so far getting used to is probably with Death Knights because they are new and experiences are new with the class. Some Dungeons I've been in groups with 2 Rets for dps or one group I had 3 Death Knights a Hunter and a Priest. That's a bit different there with multiple of one class in a group of 5. Working with a good Death Knight seems fun with at least one DK in a 5 man group based on how my Paladin AoE works tanking.

Its has being sometime of a challenge sometimes AV Shield pulling a group of mobs then start heading towards the mob closing the distance only to have some DK Death Grip it from right where the mob was before I got to it and then having to run back to where I was. As the tank that has more than often being a bit annoying to deal with. Sometime I think of it ahead of time marked a Caster in a group, AV Shield the Caster and have the DK yank the mob from where it was pulling the rest of the group that was shielded. However, I still find this a bit annoying or annoying to deal with in however I decide to pull a group in more than one ways.

However I'm still getting used to being in groups with DK's as they do add a bit to a group as well as with buffs. Two DK in a group is bit much to deal with and three DK's though can seem like fun, to me is more of a challenge to deal with with all the uncontrolled AoE being tossed or spammed around in the groups that I've been in and sometime without regard to the target mob. One good DK in a group seems to work well with a balance of other classes in groups that I've tanked with beyond that its one DK to many for me as a usual 5 man group.

Their will be allot of DK's in WotLK and few will be really good at first learning the class or being as experienced as the other more well known classes. Many will have to learn to work with other classes in how they play. With so many new DK's can only hope they don't end up with some stigma like Hunters have in WoW learning to group and work with other classes.

Screenshots WotLK Beta: Double Take.

Dragonflight Quest defending the time stream. There's two of us. Wearing the The Wyrmrest Accord faction Tabard.

WotLK Beta: Testing Sacred Shield

Paladins sure get lots of Bubbles. Well I've had a change to try Sacred Shield some. It pretty much does what it says. Best i can tell and looking at the combat log on proc it absorbs up to 500 damage then fades away till next it procs which cannot occur more than once every 6 sec on damage. Its a Shield that looks like a somewhat shiny bubble. Sometime can be a bit hard to see it as the tank tanking when a Holy drops it on you, but its there if you refocus.

Anyway this doesn't seem all that great as a spell for Protection, though it has some uses. Its seems more for Holy Paladin to use and to land it on the Tank or the one taking damage. It absorbs some damage going to the tank as they take damage if and when it procs and it seems to procs often which increases the critts of the caster of the spell Flash of Light as the tootip says. As a Protection the Flash of Light part is not of obvious benefit if your Tanking or if self casted in cases without another Paladin (Holy) on a 5 man run per say. But the damage shield has some uses in absorbing some damage in places where you have lots of AoE action. So some situational uses.

I asked a Holy Paladin on one my runs how it works for him and best he says he keeps it up on the tank as its free Flash of Light as it procs about 4-5 times over the duration of the spell. Its not great but every bit helps out he says.

Using it as a Protection I don't really find it all that useful especially when soloing as often I'm blocking all the damage and in cases where I am doing that this spell is barely use full. In some massive AoE it can be useful some where you may have lots of mana to burn and lots of stuff hitting you all around which adds up. It has some uses, buts its very minimal soloing for a Protect and not usually worth using usually for a Protect. It also cost a bit of mana for a Protect to use with very minimal benefit.

I can only maybe imagine some Protection Paladins that somehow may have to off-heal in large Raid for some reason using it maybe to increase their Flash of Light critts maybe in rare situation having to heal. But with the mana cost a Protect already don't have enough mana pool as it is to keep casting huge mana cost spells. I personally don't ever heal so I can't say beyond that personally as I rather DPS if anything. Now if your going to pull 10+ mobs to AoE it does have uses as you'll have more mana than anything with BoS and you'll probably be taking some degree of damage and it can only help. I'm kinda wondering where Rank 2 of this spell is as well.

Monday, September 29, 2008

WotLK Beta: New Face Smasher.

Upgraded from my crafted Saronite Bulwark Shield. Upgrade from that would have been the Leeka's Shield from Cot Stratholme which drops from the last boss which I hadn't seen drop as yet in few runs.

But was already doing some transmuted with Alchemy for Titanium Bars with the cooldown of 3 days as well as having my Hunter mine Saronite for Ore. Crystallized Essence you get from some Elemental Spirits or from mining which are the new motes which gives Eternals the new Primals. Some Titanium I bought from AH (5 bars) cost a pocket full I'm gonna say like 2500g ouch!!. Extortion sounds like a better word. But that's ok. I know how to farm money to make it back. One does need to invest always in a good shield.

All those it took to craft Titansteel (expensive) which you need to eventually craft the shield. Lots of cooldowns. Had a BS friend from a PuG craft the the Shield which does look nice. There are about 4 good pieces of gear a Tank can get crafted from Titansteel.

Currently Revered with the Argent Crusade with a bit of the reps from wearing the Argent Crusade Tabard. So as a Tank you get to pick up the new Helm Enchant as from previous post on factions. The Shield Enchant is fairly easy to get as well as far as mats.

Tip: Easiest way to get enchanting essences is to save and DE all your greens up to 80. Or it will cost you. All my greens from 70-80 I just had them all DE for lots of the new WotLK essences.

Screenshots WotLK Beta: The Halls of....

Halls of Lightning above and Halls of Stone below both in The Storm Peaks both apart of the Ulduar Dungeon hub. These dungeons are a treasure trove of lore about the Titans. The Dungeons are just Beautiful and huge stone monuments on the inside and very well guarded. Stunningly pretty with amazing design! Both are very fun Dungeons to say the least.

WotLK Beta: A Blade!

A nice Blade. This the best Blue Tanking Sword i've seen so far. It dropped for me tonight in Halls of Lightning from 2nd boss. You can pick up a few nice ones leveling if you think ahead. Wyrmrest Accord has a nice one as well leveling up at Revered.
Its not Epic but its still nice. Sure beats looking at my sword on the live server. Yeah Beta.

WotLK Beta: Damage Hill new Terittory.

I usually take allot of screenshots of stuff because I can't always remember everything that happen so I capture stuff as events to go back and look through later to remember things or for the blog. But I've being running allot of Instances most with lvl 80's or 78-80 and often my Recount log looks like what you see above.

I've read allot of Blue posts to keep up on stuff from Blues and from Ghostcrawler (Class Designer) comments on Tank class. Before in tBC Blizzard deliberately kept Tanks overall DMG low for obvious reasons. But in WotLK its been their aim to raise Tanks DPS to help their soloability as well and other reasons including Raid DPS contribution and have Tanks at about 15-20% below the DPS line from the various comments I've read by Ghostcrawler. One thread Linked Here.

Anyway a good geared Tank can do some good damage in a 5 man Instance or raid overall. As for DPS its up there with the rest of group vs way below. And if your a poorly geared DPS the Tank might just be crawling all over your DPS & DMG going up that DPS hill as it will show. Often in my runs so far a Death Knight tops the overall damage or a Ret maybe with around 1400-1700 dps or so depending on how good their gear is so far. As a Tank I'm often around 1100-1300 dps so far in my gear as well and again usually I'm not always Consecrating either which can add up to allot in AoE Tanking.

My gear is and fairly good at the moment as I continue to work on it. But in my Instance run as the Tank I'm often in the top 3 for damage. Often 1st or 2nd at that in overall DMG and can be up there competing with the DPS. The strange odd thing is. I'm not always Consecrating like we usually do in tBC. If its 3 target mobs or less I never usually consecrate unless its a Boss or a Hard mob and at most if I do its one Initial consecrate at that. Usually its HotR as it can hold its own on 3 mobs with Seal of Corruption or Vengeance ticking away doing damage.

On 4 mobs or more that's one less mob that HotR can hit and at that point if you have BoS up and all mobs hitting you have no choice but to consecrate to burn off of sitting on just about 100% mana which increases your threat and damage. But in most instances so far I barely Consecrate unless I have to or need to and I'm showing up where I am on the Recount list. This is new Terittory in WotLK for Tanks. You know in tBC some DPS always ask to see the Damage Meter. Well you probably may not want to ask in WotLK where you are on that list.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

WotLK Beta - Tanking Issue with some Death Knights?

I'm not sure if this is a issue or if it will ever be. I'm not sure and I'm just going to record this as a event and keep and eye out to see if it happens again and under what circumstance. But I was running CoT - Stratholme and Utgarde Pinnalce with included a Death Knight in party and noticed I kept running low on mana.

Low enough that if I remember correctly I was popping Devine Plea and Arcane Torrent constantly for mana when off cooldown. I couldn't figure out why at the time. But I never stopped to drink though as i just rolled with it. At times I had to change seals to using SoW. On most my instance runs I've so far never had any real mana issues at all usually.

But in CoT - Stratholome I kept having it this one instance as well as I did notice it in Utgarde Pinnacle with another Death Knight in party. I kept running low on mana with BoS up. Now the only thing I can figure so far is some Death Knights using Death and Decay often as AE without regard to how the current Tank (Paladin) in the group Tanking mechanics work. Thus causing Threat over the Tank threat and reducing the mobs hitting the Tank (Paladin) who does need the reactive threat and for BoS to proc for mana.

Thus at times that may be the problem I have encountered, which may be due to how some Death Knights are playing their class at the moment. I'm currently unsure at the moment and may need some feedback on this since I've never really played a Death Knight. Mine is still sitting on ice. But at this point i'm not sure if this is a issue or can be one with some new Death Knights in groups with other Tanks in how they usually Tank.

WotLK Beta - Tabard and Faction Reputation.

There are 5 Major Reputation Factions in WotLK best I can tell though 6 of them offer faction gear. Those being:

Knights of the Ebon Blade.
Argent Crusade - They have the Helm Enchant at Revered Arcanum of the Stalwart Protector.
The Wyrmrest Accord.
Kirin Tor.
The Sons of Hodir - They have the Shoulder Enchant at Revered Lesser Inscription of the Pinnacle. At Exalted Greater Inscription of the Pinnacle.
The Kalu'ak - Faction gear but, No Tabard.

Each of these factions all have Tabards you can pickup at their respected QM at "Friendly" with the faction. The exception is with "The Sons of Hodir" who currently as yet does not have a Tabard or a QM in game as yet or not yet implemented. But the other 4 have a Tabard that you can earn reputation with other than through quests and dailies of each.

You can pick up "ALL" the Tabards if you like at Friendly and just wear whichever one you want in any lvl 80 Dungeon and you will earn reputation points on behalf of that faction in that lvl 80 Dungeon. You get a Buff when the Tabard is worn to indicate the faction behalf your gaining reps with and doesn't do anything else otherwise.

Trash: 5 point.
Mini Boss: 10 points.
Boss: 30 Points.

So which ever lvl 80 Dungeon or Raid you like to run just wear that Tabard for that Faction and you earn rep points for your reps on that Faction behalf and counts for your Faction reps. Those points add up abit also and I've being wearing the Argent Crusade Tabard for Reps and they do add up in lvl 80 Dungeon runs. Does not work on low level instance only instance considered lvl 80 Dungeons.

Each faction has items fairly easily obtainable at by doing most the area quests or dailies and reaching Honored that's very usable especially for Tanks. So when you can or in zone for any these factions check out the QM and grab you a Tabard.

Screenshots - Look and Feel

So far WotLK gear for Protec Paladins looks and feel more warrior like in look and feel especially given that three tanks share much the same gear. Shoulders sticks out allot on gear.

WotLK Beta - Screenshots from CoT - Strathlome

Me and the man Uther! Who wouldn't want to be buddies with Uther? But Uther looks a bit angry today. Wonder how hard his hammer hits.

I've seen some Pets in Beta, but that Core Hound Hunter Pet (The Kurken from Azuremyst Isle) has to be on the very coolest of all pets or the Core Hounds. It shakes my screen when stampeding around and fills it up screen with lava Breath on fighting mobs. Damn cool pet! Aren't those Ambassador titles cool. You can work to get you one before WotLK goes live.

Boss in a Box!! Well its a Placeholder image. Oh Cavern of times Stratholme is fairly easy though. Its a lvl 80 Dungeon but you can do it around 78 or so (Boss is lvl 82) it has lots of fun factor. Heroics may be more fun though I'm sure in this place with all the undead. Threat wasn't any problem at all as you can see.

I do notice at time healers having to heal the DK's often as well. I'm not sure why. Anyway I'm topping the meter. Not something you see everyday as a Tank but competitive it seems in DMG if geared well.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Screenshots WotLK Beta: Epic Quests!

I won't say what Quest it is. But many quests are very different than tBC. Some chains have lots of Lore and event Interaction in Northrend much more than anything seen in tBC. Some can be quite Epic (Epic Quest Chains) in event as indicated in my last post about quests whether it has purple items or not in the end. Many are just fun to see and be able to participate in. This is just one of many that are very Epic Quest chain in event.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Questing in WotLK

After leveling from 70-80 I'm just going to say Questing in WotLK Beta is allot easier than in tBC. Blizzard has done allot to really add more fun to Quests and change up many of the quests and how they are done and try to introduce more fun elements to some quests when possible in the various zones. So questing is much easier overall.

You will still see get X amount of Y in quest design as that can be hard to get around not having some quests designed like that. But as you go along you see Blizzard does introduce some mix of quest type or what you actually do on quests to add variance to player enjoyment of quests. Some Quests involve the lore of Northrend and Arthas as well. As usual some quests are more fun than others and some longer than others as well. Many quests also give allot of XP also, some much more depending on the particular quest type.

But unlike running around any BC zone trying to get X amount of Y for quite a while in Beta its quite noticeable that it doesn't take long to get X of any items I've found. Most of time I've killed the mob and the item drops and drops quickly. That was a very noticeable change in Beta. Some mobs dropped the items I've found close to 100% the time, but not always though much greater than 50% the time though it seem. I'm not sure if that was also due to it being Beta as well. But if it doesn't change much from Beta to live things will be much easier and much faster.

With many quests in the later zone having Phasing and lore elements to them even many of those are not very long or very hard usually. What Blizzard has done with some quests is the ability to stack more quests with Phasing of area or zone into the same area with a different reality to the individual player. Often along the path of some chain quests as the zone change as you go further along some quests.

One the biggest change is Quests that unlock Flight Paths as many quests seem to do that to some areas and usually with a Phasing of the area you were in before. But overall quests are much much easier, shorter and overall fun to do. As everyone have a different level of quest enjoyment, its all up to the player just what they enjoy.

Profession Change for WotLK?

I've being given things some thought as what my Professions will be come WotLK. I'm not much into changing Professions. I've had the same professions since starting the game. I play my professions more for fun and what I enjoy more so than whats best for me as a spec as both have served me absolutely well for fun and pure economics. And I like economics.

I enjoy Herbalism and Alchemy. Its also funny because I work in the Pharmaceutical Industry in real life which almost somewhat relates to Alchemy. But I enjoy my professions as fun as well as playing and manipulating the AH market in that mini game as well I like to play. I'm not worried one bit with Alchemy in WotLK whether it has BoE stuff or not. I like playing with Potions and Elixirs so Alchemy is here to stay. One thing is I know how to make money with Alchemy so i'm not worried.

When it comes to gathering Profession and Herbalism I'm less sure if I will keep it. There is nothing that interesting with Herbalism. I enjoy it but with WotLK my own perception tells me that mining is a winner and would be good to take up especially with all the crafted gear needing Saronite and Titanium. In Beta you can barely find Titanium anywhere to craft Epic pieces. Alchemist can also transmute Titanium with metals from mining as well so a bonus. But switching Herbalism to Mining would not be that hard as my Paladin have max Herbalism and my lvl 70 Hunter has max Mining.

All that would need drop Herbalism for Mining on my Paladin and have my Hunter drop mining for Herbalism. Fair trade especially since I'll level up my Hunter 2nd after my Paladin so I'll still have ability to get Herbs for my crafting. But overall I think picking up Mining would be a better bet in WotLK than having Herbalism on my main character. At least I will have Herbalism on my Hunter to still support Alchemy.

WotLK Beta: Maintankadin & Beta Paladins Unite

Among all the leveling I did on the weekend working on getting to 80 took a break from leveling to get together with some of the Maintankadin and Beta Paladins for Paladins Unite.

Was really fun as well both Horde and Alliance Paladins in Beta getting together for some fun and group picture shots while we were all on the same server. We gathered in the Cave where I had seem Prince Arthas before.

Some of the Paladins I recognize some from the Maintankadin forum. Got to meet up with Honorshammer as well who was the most recognize Paladin to me since he's a community blogger who's blog I frequently read. We killed some time among all the lag and overall it was fun time which doesn't come around often. That's allot of pally power and plate all in one place.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

WotLK Beta: Lvl 80 BE Paladin Stats Talented & Untalented.

Blood Elf Paladin Base stats "Untalented" at lvl 80.

Blood Elf Paladin stats "Talented" as a Protection Paladin without gear at lvl 80.

Posted those since I know some readers and those that theorycraft on the tanking class of various class and races will be interested in knowing what stats are at 80 without gear. Enjoy!

A reader wanted to see my gear stats. That's my gear and stats currently mostly all Quest Reward Blues as well as crafted Blues of Saronite and Daunting Plate pieces. Don't have any lvl 80 pieces on as yet except the Blue crafted neck piece. Lvl 80 Crafted Epic pieces are really hard to obtain as Titanium is hard to obtain. Need to hit up some more instance when have time.

Edited: Added pic & stats in current gear.

WotLK Beta: Made it to 80.

The lag was and is Terrible to quest/grind in! As well is the constant "World Server down". But despite all that, I just kept going anyway. Takes allot of Patience to endure that! At times it was a test of will it seems like. Yeah, its only Beta but leveling still takes Allot of Effort and perseverance to do so with massive amount of lag and server downs as well as testing things out along the way.

At 80 you do get a Achievement flash across the screen for hitting lvl 80 as a accomplishment. I missed it since I was taking a clean UI screenshot. Achievements also appear to be zone wide also whenever they happen.

This was how I progressed: Howling Fjord with (Nexus Coldarra area in Borean Tundra) > Dragonblight > Zul' Dark > Sholazar Basin > Icecrown. I didn't do any quests in Grizzly Hill or one of the last zone of The Storm Peaks. Barely did any in Borean Tundra other than the Nexus area quests.

I leveled entirely as Protection spec as always and in Full Tank gear. I made a big effort to wear WotLK Armor gear as I leveled as well to test it out leveling the entire way from 70-80. Just about everything is documented in my blog.

With my tBC gear i used from 70-74 with some WotLK blues from quests or Instant quests. From 74-80 replaced some my gear/weapon with crafted Saronite gear as well as crafted Daunting Tanking gear you can get crafted at 78. Numerous Trinkets you will pick up along the way as well. I find the crafted Blue Saronite & Daunting gear to be rather good Plate gear with lots of Stamina/Strength/Defense Rating.

Outside of Instances most the Plate gear that drops seem to drop in lvl 74+ zones of Zul'Dark, Shalozar Basin, Icecrown.

Other Observation since last Patch.
Change to Shield of Righteousness damage nerf is quite noticable on 1-3 targets. Especially on one target where it now takes a noticable longer time to kill a single target.

Also noticed had more HP as well. I though I was mistaken noticing did seem HP was increased somehow.

Hammer of the Righteous, not sure if its in the notes somewhere on the maintankadin forum as havent had time to read all those threads. But with the latest change to HotR as it says in the tooltip it seems to hit roughly for 3.03 x the DPS on your character sheet DPS. HotR damage is also affected by your AP which affects the DPS on your character sheet. Hits with HotR does increase with higher AP.

*For the next expansion of WotLK it will of course be much easier for you to get from 70-80 with a polished game working Server and much less lag of course.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

WotLK: Alchemy Discovery System

I found allot of new Recipes now at the trainer since the patch, quite a bit more than before. But if your at the Trainer in Dalaran you can't go wrong. Most recipes seem like newer versions of the BC ones with some new Elixirs and new Alchemist stones. But the new Alchemy Discovery System was what I wanted to try out: Northrend Alchemy Research.

Its a Recipe you learn from the trainer that allows the Alchemist to tinker around with stocks of herbs from Northrend to discover new Potions, Elixirs or Flasks. This seem to be a more fair system than the tBC system of brewing hundreds of Potions and Elixirs with no luck. However I've being lucky enough in BC to discover all the Flasks in Alchemy in tBC through discovery.

So at the Bank used some of the 4 Herbs that I had as it calls for to Research and tinker to find something new. I discovered Elixir of Expertise which grants 45 expertise, which is now a new learned recipe as you see below. What I also noticed was I made a new Flask as a side effect of tinkering with the herbs Flask of Mojo (Increase mana regen to 38 per 5 sec) which is not a Flask I've learned as yet not did I learn the Recipe. Its just seem as a random Alchemy creation in the Research process of tinkering with herbs.

So a nice side effect it seem whether its a intended effect or not. The cooldown is 6 days and 20 hours it seems. So once a week you can play around and try to discover something new.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Thank Goodness its Friday.

Haven't played for days, guess its obvious when I'm absent here on the blog. Yeah life happens. I feel stuck with one more level to go. Being a bit too busy and tired last few days. At least its really Friday.

Bummer, Beta servers are down again for another new patch.

Hell I haven't even downloaded the last Beta patch from earlier this week either since I last played either.

Well there is always a bright side, lots of rested XP! Hope Paladins get something good in the new Beta Patch.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

WotLK Beta: Almost There..

78-79 has to be the fastest level I being through especially if you looked at the last post despite the massive lag on server. Started today about 60% way through 78. Considering I only hit 78 last night also. I'm not sure what the exact numbers was but I took a XP count today where I was when I started and for the first 30 mins and I was running about 300K for 30 mins with rest bonuses. Used up all that rested XP pretty quick as well. But I had fun the whole way!

Well had enough of AoEing stuff, back to questing for fun.

WotLK Beta: Hammer of the Righteous

That's a partial snapshot at lvl 78 vs lvl 80 mobs during AoEing. That's a lot of non hits by HotR. Will have to reduce all those Deflects, Dodges, Misses. That's allot of non hits!

WotLK Beta: Somewhere in Northrend. A Session in Pictures

I was on a Quest and came upon a place somewhere in Northrend. Hmm, Nice Formation. Maybe I can have some fun. I'm good for that. Lets see how much fun I can have. Even with the massive lag on the server.
Oh nice a 80 Elite too for the mix of things. Great.
Ardent Defender don't leave home without it for stunts like these, never know when it will be saving you if you need it. Holy Wrath is also fun when it goes off for a 2 sec stun as well.
I Win! I Win! Round 2+ I'm Game.
More Please! More! Oh, I made all those undead Piles in the background too.
There is a message in all these pictures. The last one is in here. It's nice to be quite rested as well. Session started at lvl 77 and about 10 bars to 78. When I left a few short hours later I was 78 and almost into 3 Blue Bars. I had forgotten what the quest was as well. Shhh!

SoL + JoL + HotR + BoS + lots of Mobs + Evade hits = BoS procs more and more for no Mana issues. Lots of dodge is good here. No downtime.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

WotLK Beta: Phased Zones and What is it?

Often you don't have to think up that many stuff to write or blog about. I often never know what I'll write about either until I start. But I was skimming the Blue threads like I usually do the other day and came across this thread on Phased Zones. So though I make a note of it to get back and blog about it when I could. Its has being very Interesting in WotLK so far in my experience with Phasing.

Phase Zone or Phase Events is not entirely new in WotLK. But, its been used on a much larger scale by Blizzard with the coming of WotLK the next expansion. If your a 70 and have done any or all of the Shattered Sun Offensive (SSO) quests you probably also did that one quest (can't remember name) you got in Shattrah City on the Terrace of Light that ask you to go to Blade Edge Mountain at Bashir Landing. Obtain a Phase item from one the mobs there. Use the item and in the new alternate (Phased) reality retrieve 10 Mana Cells. If you watch Star Trek NG like I like to do you know what Phasing is and have seen it.

Its kinda like seeing the reality that's hidden behind the real reality that you see. Except that the other reality is not active unless your actually in it. Shift in reality best I can think of it, kinda like in Star Trek NG. This Phasing concept allows Blizzard to pull off all kind of new realities Questing, Soloing, with Instances or Events of different sorts. To me, Its just allot of possibilities that they can do with the concept when you really think of it in other dynamic ways.

At first everyone thought the Death Knight (DK) starting area was Instance based in some way. Almost everyone at first believed it because to you the individual DK, you had a very unique experience that was truly awesome. As well as if someone else shared the same quest at the same points you did as well. They shared the same reality and saw the world change in a ever changing dynamic way. The DK starting area is actually a Phased Zone and a very large one.

In Northrend in Beta so far I've come across several quests like this having taken the time to quest. In most instance in my experience so far you get a quest from a NPC just like any other quest usually. Tells you to do whatever the quests ask just like normal. But what happen next is that the area around you just totally shift or Phase to a different reality with the people, NPC, mobs who were around you to something obvious and at other time not so obvious initially.

In the Phase reality you can obtain the objective of the quest or meet whoever you were suppose to meet as per the quest objective. But its a reality that's unique to you the individual being in the same area as you were before but your not seen by anyone else that was initially around you either. Its hard to say where and when you pick up such a quest. I've often encountered them just going along on a chain quest and there it suddenly happens. That has happened through various zones.

Currently in questing in one the later zones Icecrown which is a lvl 77+ zone one the most recent zones opened up for more of a challenge. I picked up several quests which turned out to be Phased Events. Being in a Phased Event you can see other players participating in the same event as well but no one else can. Rather fun. But some of these Phase Event can look very grand scale as in the DK starter zone quests. But even on a much smaller quests they can seem so as well.

The last few of these quests I picked up and started I had no idea I was even in a Phased event as it was totally in essence entirely seamless. I noticed along the way doing the quest that the world had changed somehow as things seemed to act a bit different. As I paid more attention I realized I was having a unique experience. This can happen from quest to the next quest as already noted.

The things Blizzard can do with these Phased Zones or Events are rather fun with lots of possibilities. They can be very interesting or quite dynamic whatever it is. But that leaves all kind of other possibility as well as to what in itself trigger and event as such. NPC's already know who you are or what Title you have if you have one. Who knows what Blizzard can do to trigger such Phase events to give enriched experience to one individual player Soloing or to a group of 3, 5, 10 or 25 players. Just seem like allot of possibilities exist to me just thinking of it.

Could Blizzard conceivable have such unique events that they trigger on the unique Achievement Titles of a individual Player? With all the different unique Achievement Titles players will have in WotLK who knows what unique play or quests that can bring with Phase Events. Now Blizzard may never have such things as yet or even have them implemented. Maybe?

Its also possible to think they haven't thought of it
, but who's to say with the new Achievements system they haven't? (Could be a Sugggestion on the Beta Forums) That in itself can lead to a whole new game in itself of players doing stuff to see things because of Phase Zones, Events or Reality. The game environment dosen't have to be recreated or changed that much. But the reality does. Who knows the possibility that can exist.

Could quests be triggered in vicinity of a NPC based on a Achievement or Title only? Allowing the Player to do a unique quest in a Phased Reality to obtain maybe a unique Item or one of a kind Item? Such things could be possible. One step futher how about a entire Phased BG based on some kind of player Achievement? Some players can find that rather interesting use of Phasing. But they all just ideas.

But so far I've found the use of Phasing to be fun and hope Blizzard can do more with this to enrich the game for the Single Players that like to Quest and Solo as well, Groups in Instances as well as with Achievements earned. Lots of possibilities can exist with Phasing.

WotLK Beta: Flying Mounts, A Revisited Idea I had.

Courtesy of MMO-Champion

I wrote this post WotLK: Flying Mounts on September 1st just out of curiosity wondering after seeing all the Dragons in Dragonblight and often dead ones at that why we can't get improved flying mounts that looks similar to the ones you see in Northrend. More specifically the ones you see in Dragonblight.

Well it seems like Blizzard has now added them to WotLK as drops in the recent Beta patch 8926 you can get from a Instance as found by MMO-Champion. So now you can get to earn another unique flying mount with some effort. Having done some quests in Beta riding on the dragons in Dragonblight they are really nice.

So nice to have these new Drake Mount in WotLK as well as they do come in various skins and colors. How nice it is indeed and many will want to eventually earn one. Something else to put on your list to earn in WotLK. It sure will be on mine.

Screenshots WotLK Beta: Titan Freya

Avatar of Freya a 80 Elite Titan descendant. Blizzard does put a lot of work into designing NPC's that just look totally Awesome. She's nice to talk to for conversation as well after some unlocking to do so.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Confirmed! WotLK in Stores 11/13/08

Title says it all. As of a few mins ago Blizzard own Corporate web page at www.Blizzard.com has been updated with the WotLK release date picture. To be in stores November 13, 2008.

Where will you be that day???

Well I haven't used any vacation time at the JoB ALL Year long. Think I need to use some them days or loose it as they say.

Wooooot. Excited!!

Raiding for me at least is oficially dead, that may be different for you and your goals remaining. But for me it's all Dead. Afterall I'm in Beta as well. Rest of my time on live is working to finish up my reps to earn me another Title as a goal and the only goal left to work on. "Ambassador or Champion" sounds ideal. Time to work them undead reps when have time.

Thank goodness for Warhammer. Thank goodness for competition, so Blizz can get in gear to get stuff done vs "Its ready when we say it's Ready". Them Devs are gonna be working "Overtime" for 8 more weeks to get that product out on time. That is not a lot of time remaining.

My preorder has been in over 2 months ago at my local Game store. Yeah.

So where and what will you be doing November 13, 2008?? I'll be at my local Game Stop store at midnight. I've already preordered the collectors edition and they already told me they gonna be open as well.

Take Two

Pretty much says it all. Crashed on Friday with all the new invites. For the rest of the weekend that screen greeted me every time I tried to log in. Frustrating! Two weekends in a row, sucks.

Friday, September 12, 2008

WotLK Beta: Some Recount DPS vs A lvl 80 Elite

Was in Sholazar Basin and saw a lvl 80 Elite and lots of undead, too bad they don't give any XP :( though. Anyway I saw a Elite so cleared the area and took me a shot for being daring even at lvl 77.

I started with Seal of Corruption for the first couple seconds for a stack and then switched to SoL and JoL with BoS and just did the rotation of anything that wasn't on cooldown. Sometime GCD clashed spells quite a bit especially for Undead stuff. But always kept ShoR on cooldown more so than anything else as it does vast majority of all my DPS, especially if it lucky to crit.

Survived with about 30% HP, about that much mana or much less also. Don't think I hit Divine Plea either. On a "Single" target ShoR does majority of any damage I do obviously even on a Elite 3 levels above me. ShoR damage is based entirely off of BV.

WotLK Beta: Beta Server

With all the new recent invites logging into WotLK Beta, the server is EXTREMELY Laggy!

Really it is. An instant cast spell can take up to 10 sec to cast it seem or more. Doesn't make doing anything that fun.

WotLK Beta: Some Recount DPS

Just have being playing around a bit while leveling and with Recount log taking and looking at some log as I do stuff. Currently at lvl 77. Here are some Recount logs of what my DPS looks like questing on "Single Target" session over several single targets. Usually mob dies within 10 sec or often less.

This is with just using Seal of Corruption or Seal of Vengeance on Single Targets only.

This is with Seal of Righteousness on several Single Targets also.

Majority of all my DPS is on a "Single Target" is done with Shield of Righteousness (ShoR) and Melee hits. I usually drop a Judgement of whatever Seal first then I hit ShoR and then HotR. By the time I usually get around to hitting ShoR the next time the mob dies or close to it. More so if ShoR hit critts. With SoC/V stacks barely have time to build up mob dies so fast. I can say one thing ShotR critt hits are nice when it happens as its a great chunk of DPS or threat. But on Single mobs they usually die in 10 secs. On a Multi-Mob attack it looks a bit different than on single targets.

As for Holy Shield. Well on a Single mob it only ever uses 1 or 2 of the charges on a single mob whenever i attack a single mob. So often more than half the charges go unused before the mob dies. ShotR has a much cheaper mana cost so its used every time its off cooldown as obviously it does way more damage/threat however you want to look at it. My current spec is below.

With all the recent new Beta invites that went out. The Beta server is lagging horribly in a big way. Makes doing anything severely laggy. Just casting a spell takes like forever its so laggy.

Edited: Add Spec pic & Holy Shield Comment.

Another WotLK Beta Key

Yesterday with all the other Beta invites that went out many others now received WotLK Beta Keys. My Beta invite came on my secondary WoW account which I had for some time.

But checking my mail I noticed my main WoW account had a email from Blizzard with another WotLK Beta Invite. Duhh. You know I'm not usually that lucky. My luck usually just not that good, especially for in game loot or progression. One Beta key is great, but and extra is rather Hot.

I've been sitting on that Beta Key trying to decide just what to do with it. I though maybe I give it away to another one of the WoW blogger who's blog I read, at least it can help their regular readers too. Some of them seem to have gotten invites as well. I though maybe have a blog reader key give away, but no fair way to do that off my head and be real fair to all readers. I though maybe give it away to someone in my guild maybe.

Hell haven't decided just what to do with it yet. So what to do with a extra Beta Key?

Edit: Gratz to Salud of The Holy Light for getting the Beta Key. I guess he's now in Beta.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

WotLK Beta: Patch 8926 Buffed!

This new Patch build looks and feels exciting. I'm excited to test things out and see how things play out. Spending points in Ret may have all different kinds of options depending on what changed in talents. Nice to have options and a bit of options at that.

The Devs are "Not" finished fixing these trees as yet. As GC did say they like to add a fun talent or two in bottom of the tree. That is not yet there as yet. But so far looks really exciting as of right now. Have to Test and Tell. Gonna be Fun times playing with the new talent changes and a Shield that deal royal amount of pain.

Read Lore's review piece of Patch 8926 over at Tankspot Here.

Off to Beta land.......


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

5 Possible Reasons Why your Class in Undone in Beta

Just my thoughts mussing about it. I'm sure you may have your own.

5. Because players on the Forums and Beta Forums won't stop QQing about everything. Do they ever.

4. Because of the Hundreds if not Thousands of post combined of players asking for everything for their class in new and repeated thread posts. Just check all the forums you get a idea.

3. Because Players and Impatient Players alike like to write post asking or demanding in various tones that a Blue or a specific Blue answer their question, needs as well as class needs. You see allot of those and often surprisingly a Blue seem to respond to various degree.

2. Because the Blues actually reads all if not most of every thread on the Forums especially on the Beta Forums. Imagine how much of a developers time that must consume daily. Imagine how much of your time that would consume if you had to read every thread?

1. Because the game Developers devoting spending all or much of their time on the Forums and Beta Forums instead of actually Working on the Game. The developers can't get much done in a efficient and timely manner as they would like to as a result. That could be both good and bad thing both I guess! Good they read all the threads for feedback for possible changes or improvement. Downside is the amount of time consumed doing so in productivity and having to respond to all the threads they respond to.

You probably could come up with just as much reasons i'm sure or better one perhaps.

Screenshots WotLK Beta: Shrine

At Rest and at Peace in the Emerald Dragonshrine.

WoWInsider Image

Thanks to the readers that pointed out my Image on WoWInsider.

I do read WoWInsider as well, daily as a matter of fact in keeping up with as much as one can keep up with things in WoW and in other places.

However Mike I have no idea why my Image Pic is on WoWInsider in your piece or even just what you are referring to with my Image in "Not-so of the Shattered Sun" in your piece. I have no idea what he's referring to. I know of you personal beef with Paladins as well, especially Protection Paladins.

Oh, next time you could simply ask if you wanted to use my Image, as well or of anyone else that is as well. I happen to be a very cool guy. Comments work just fine on my blog by the way.

WotLK Beta: Some Gear Stat Shots.

This is my Tank gear and Stats in WotLK Beta and what I pretty much choose to quest and Tank in @ 76 with some Blue upgrades and crafted gear. All gear Enchanted pretty much with much the same Enchants like my tBC gear with a few exceptions for Strength as well as Potency on Weapon.

There is no intellect on any my gear. Grinding and Soloing I do just fine in my gear. Mana issues are very minimal having the new BoS. Mana gets even better with more avoidance. I'm not sure what all the QQing is about on the Beta Forums about missing Intellect on gear and not having enough Mana to play with.

I'm still 76 and just haven't had much time to play since the last patch went live which was last Friday. I only played for a hour or so the first time last night after work which wasn't much. But got some quests done in Sholazar Basin a new zone. I didn't have much time to focus on seeing what changed from last Beta build. What was obvious though was Seal of Corruption does less damage than before in the ticks and overall. ShoR is great with the BV change of Shield Spec increasing BV from Strength.

Mostly I grinded killing anything I saw. I had loaded on the addon Recount which now works. So wanted to see what damage looked like overall. So while on quests I was just AoEing everything in large pulls. SoL & BoS is just lovely! Never had to spend anytime drinking on lvl 76-77 mobs even when I pulled at least a dozen. For that it's all SoL & JoL, BoS takes care of mana at which point you really have no choice but to consecrate to drop you mana from just about max full. Why? Imagine how much hits you avoid with almost a dozen things trying to hit you, and everytime that happens BoS proc's. You have no choice but at a certain point to try and hit everything to burn mana. You can stop consecrating when you have less targets. It's just fun!

I noticed something grinding in masses. ShoR shaves a good chunk of health off a target mob and a bit more when it critts. Have to watch how you use it AoEing lots of mobs when the mob is below half health. You hit ShoR and mob dies in such instance, you loose your target if you didn't tab to next mob or did so fast enough where your now stopped auto attacking. Just something to watch for as ShoR can kill a mob before you realize it should be dead. Solution just tab to next target really fast. I have 580 BV in the gear I wear. That's a 1400 hit with ShoR. When it critts it's almost 3K. Mobs can sometime die before I realize it.

Edited: ShoR not ShotR

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Screenshots WotLK Beta: Lich King, Hi Arthas

I was wondering around a zone and saw a cave and wondered inside to explore. Oh what do you know. Its Prince Arthas, duh. Hey he got a nice Libram at his side too. Be cool if we had one of those on armor.

Back in a earlier zone when doing a Quest the Lich King appeared. Oh Hi Boss! Man you are a Big Boss too. So what do I do, I screenshot it. He seem to appear in various places or taunt you in various ways.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Tanking: Crushing Blows in 3.0

Crushing blows to be changed when patch 3.0 hits for Raid Bosses at lvl 73 as confirmed per Blue. As well with all the Tanking gear change with drop in defense and being uncrushable a concern. Mobs at +4 will still be able to crush, but that be in WotLK if your already 70.

The Road Ahead, Embracing Change

Life changes and things change in time. The world constantly changes around us. The game we all play grows, adapt and eventually change. The Protection Paladin (Tank) spec you've grown to understand and play eventually will be facing changes of its own not least of which includes our Plate gear stats. Before and eventually in WotLK.

"Change is the essence of Life. Be willing to surrender what you are, for what you could become".

Some people don't like change as well and fear surfaces for many valid reasons. Some people who are not in the know will be lost with all the changes. Hopefully thats not you. But whether you agree or disagree with life, Blizzard's game or Class changes How you cope with those changes will be entirely up to you!

Was reading my blog roll list as usual and came across this one earlier by Vanifae: Change and the Maintankadin Community. So though I just redirect instead of writing a post.