Now I did have a bunch of screen shots of the start of the expansion. My computer didn’t think I’d want these happy wow memories and ate them. Some can be recreated, but on the whole, everything was a once in a lifetime moment. Sad times. The only thing to have survived are a few photos I took on my phone to share with my WhatsApp group 😦
The launch itself was hype overload. People were waiting at 8:30pm GMT and as the hours ticked by mine and more people were turning up. Everyone was waiting to accept the quest from Kadgar and then get to the first quests on the other side. It was largely the longest wait I’ve ever had even if I was only a few hours.
There was a rather large amount of guild banners that had been put down around Kadgar as the time got closer, forcing people to contemplate making a target and accept quest macro as they couldn’t see anything. Someone then complained about the banners and there was a moment of amusement that a lot of them were Jester banners.
There was the lag. Oh my god the lag… nipping back to shrine for something fifteen minutes before release and then coming back to nothing. The constant asking on ts of ‘am I still online?’ As we weren’t ever quite sure if it was us or the servers that were giving up. The ten seconds it took for everything to load… I’m pretty sure you get the idea.
Once we were through though. On the whole it was ‘wow’.
The first bit by the portal I wasn’t totally enamored by. The whole ‘kill loads of mobs until you find something’ really doesn’t float my boat. I also don’t read quest text if I don’t have to so I had no real idea of what was going on.
It did open up into more exciting things and areas as we went through though.
The whole Bladefist 100 arena was slightly terrifying to begin with but once the initial ‘wait, what?!’ As the mobs started to enter you realised it wasn’t so bad. Picking them off as they were beating each other over the head meant that it was plain sailing.
The luster of the initial starting point soon began to tarnish. We all knew that a few quests in our Garrisons were waiting for us. Having what seemed like the whole of the realm in one spot was a little taxing though. The whole targeting issue cropped up again and the trees needed didn’t respawn quick enough for everyone to be able to get them in good time.
I was in a group and one of our number had wandered off like a naughty toddler. The excited chirps over ts of ‘I found an elite!’ Had us dropping our tasks and run over to see what this new deadly enemy was capable of.
It was a tree.
The health pool was something to be admired as we were now the tiny lvl 90’s and not the big lvl 90’s we once were. Things like this needed to be poked to see what they would do to us but only poked from a distance and with a very long stick.
Then the almighty server crash of 2014 started. Everyone being booted off, not being able to get into your Garrison and if you did, it was full of random people!
To cut a very long story short. It resulted in the online server size being halved so that we had to queue to get online in the next few days after the launch.
To get to the above point I have never wanted to punch my screen so much.
Everyone has those zones that they really don’t like for whatever reason, mine are purely based on how much I hated the leveling experience there.
So for me my list of places would be on a 1=HATE – 5=LOVE go something like this:
Shadowmoon Valley: Shiny! But no real nostalgia about being there 4
Gorgrond: The next zone so things were different. PvP made a comeback, found some nice hordies 3
Talador: Witnessed my first npc die. Got ganked. Took an age to get out of here 2
Spires of Arak: So promising from the start, outcast bird men etc. Then you ran around in the dark. So many mobs in burrows. Only redeeming feature was the hordies seemed to be confused as I was and we had to emote help to each other. Took a god damn age to get out of this shit pit. No wonder it was blown off the Outland map 1
Nagrand: Retro! Lots of open space inhabited by neutral mobs so you didn’t have to stick to paths. Got ganked a bit but so much space you didn’t need to run into the Horde too much. Bad bit was the quests were a million miles away from each other. 5
I don’t think I can every express how much I hate Spires. The worst but was spending an hour on a bonus objective and not being able to find the last mob I needed to kill. I ended up roaming around with a Troll Druid using emotes to try and figure out where we should be going. Having them jump up and down beside a burrow as I tried to keep up with them and then running in to find this shitty mob we must have gone past 20 times as we lapped the compound.
Then there were the goblins. Pinchwhistle Point (or whatever the hell it was called) where a Horde was killing the mobs EVERYONE needed, Alliance and Horde, just because they were lvl 100 and ‘could’ was totally frustrating.
Once I dinged in Nagrand though, I was out of there. Apart from witnessing one major npc die while a Space Goat and Orc worked together to kill another Orc. I have no idea what the hell is happening. All I know is that I’m lvl 100 and I have a Garrison. (Which by now I can get into whenever I like)
The aim then changed from getting my sorry ass to 100 to gearing up. This meant dungeons *yay*
I’ve been in five. The first one took nearly an hour to get into. I’ve had the mine one, the train one, the bird one, the ghost one and the garden one. The majority of the names escape me as by the time the queue had popped I’d forgotten I was even queued.
It is in a strange way nice to be wiping again. It’s not nice however to find that there’s a freshly dinged tank giving out the instructions after they have announced that they have never been in the dungeon before.
On the train one we wiped because I’d managed to pull the room (oopsy) Luckily I was so far back everyone assumed that the tank had taunted everything, not that I’d lost my mind and used Barrage due to a brain fart moment with my keybinds. We picked ourselves up and started again. I used the right buttons and we were on the cannon boss. Hiding behind a pillar while targeted I survived and then went running off to the front of the train. I hid behind another pillar, turned around and realised I was all alone apart from the very angry mobs who wanted me dead. The tank had some gentle persuasion to go to the front and died in a hail of bullets. The healer left. Ok… Self proclaimed noob healer joined. We tried again and died again. This time the tank left and then the dps who was ‘instructing us’ decided that none of us were worth the effort and then left. We got replacements, this time a fresh tank. The tank asked what the tactics were and there was silence. I looked at the party grid, who the hell was the leader? Oh bugger, it was me. Four people were all waiting for me to tell them what to do as they incorrectly assumed that I knew what I was doing.
“Stand behind things so you don’t get hit by bullets”
“Use the ammo from mobs when they are killed to hit the boss in the cannon”
“Get to the front pillar asap”
This is all I knew but they seemed happy with it. And bizarrely enough, we made it. All the way through. I had zero clue what I was doing on the last boss much like everyone else and we manage to work it out. Although it was all over very quickly, the train crash at the end was a bit of an anti-climax but I guess they had to stop the dungeon some how or else we would still be on that god damn train!
The bird one I was told to deal with the adds. ‘ok’ I said. I’d never been in here before and I hadn’t a clue what adds they were going on about. it soon became apparent though and it didn’t take a million brain cells to work out I needed to kill the shiny birds before they got to me/anyone else.
the ghost one, the end boss was interesting! Actually had to discuss what ghost/skeleton we were going to be killing. Tank did fail a bit with allowing the cleave to hit right on top of where we were trying to squeeze through the gap. one dps helpfully suggested that we kill the middle ‘skeleton’… there were six of them… “Define ‘middle one’!?”
On a side note: The sad thing has been in the HC dungeons. After doing the proving grounds again to silver so I could ‘prove’ I was capable of killing things in there (which was totally underwhelming, not least for the fact you were still at the Temple of the White Tiger in Pandaland and not facing a more apt enemy) you get the same old obnoxious people in there that you didn’t really encounter in the normals. HC apparently means for some people ‘huge cock’ and that’s how they feel they should behave. Doesn’t matter if you were just with that person in a normal and then by a bizarre twist of fate you’re with them again in a HC. All that ‘we can do this guys!’ niceness has gone and suddenly they have transformed into this Ogre who will berate you at every oppertunity and believe they are the King/Queen of tactics etc… a HUGE COCK.
I did get distracted by things, which may explain why it took me so long to level (compared to a guild mate who did it in 8 hours) and I was spend a fair amount of time at my Garrison making sure my dailies and work orders were completed on time. I explored places I shouldn’t have been at that time like the lvl 100 crystal quest areas. Most of it was to find the flight points to make it easier, a bit of it was to have a crack at the elites and see if I could kill them. Pro tip: don’t use Barrage.
I found treasure galore. Most of it was found using a good old fashioned print out marked with highlighters. One of them was a bit unexpected but I wanted the pet (which is so cute but then I’d forgotten to get it out after a day off having it)
The lasers hurt. You get slowed down. Nightmare if you just hurtle in (which I did) the pet is adorable though.
Anyway. After getting to Nagrand via five or six of the potions to boost your xp there was a quest right near the Alliance stronghold which I could not find for the life of me. I say I couldn’t find it, I could find the npc who gave the quest but the little yellow exclamation mark on my map did not translate to one above this space goats head. I’d done every quest possible and I still was two bars away from 100. I’d found treasure that I couldn’t reach. So dungeons it was. I ran a bunch hoping that the group would stick together so I wouldn’t be faced with another 45 minute queue. Eventually after doing Grimrail about four times over I did ding.
Yaaaay. More grinding! This time for gear… boooooo