Gnome Responsible for Icecrown Boss Gates

There's a great little post over WoW.com: Further explanation for Icecrown's delayed gating. I'm about to shamelessly rip it off, but at least you know. :)

Muradin Bronzebeard, the dwarf that accompanied Arthas to Frostmourne and was long thought dead, is part of the leadership heading the assault on Icecrown Citadel. His all-star team of international lock-picks and door-openers consists of just a single fellow. This fellow:

This little Gnome is the reason we can't find our way past Deathbringer Saurfang at the moment. Maybe we should lend our support? Petition Muradin to send in more Gnomes? I'm obviously proud that one of my kin is the specialist tasked with paving the way for us all. However, I'm afraid by under-staffing this critical department, Muradin might have unwittingly set Gnomes up for even more prejudiced treatment in the long-term.

How many Gnomes does it take to open Icecrown Citadel?


The Warlock Diaries: Sholazar Basin

A short time after Vocah (my main) reached the level cap, I swapped Mining in exchange for Blacksmithing (retaining Engineering, don't you worry) and started work on Hus so I'd still be able to gather ore when I needed to. I was sitting on two level 80 toons long before 3.1 and I had completely forgotten all about my Burning Crusade main that I left back on the blasted remnants of Draenor.

With 3.3 looming on the horizon, I finally dusted off Gachnar a few weeks ago and he is currently working through the quests in The Basin. Something I've noticed is that most of the terrifyingly higher-level Horde players in the zone are too busy farming to stop by for a little murder. Sometimes I can actually survive for more than a few internecine moments in my mish-mash of Black Temple loot and heirlooms.

This is now only the third time I have had the pleasure of working through this zone.
  • having an Artisan-speed flying mount is just terrific
  • Nesingwary's quests are a great way to gain levels when fully rested
  • it really is just like Un'goro Crater, but better

A few thoughts about the process of levelling a Warlock now:
  • heirloom experience bonuses are awesome
  • the Dungeon Finder is amazing, I owe at least half of every level to it
  • Demonology is just wonderful and fun, I can't see myself ever leaving this talent tree
  • part of the last point: I'm confused about whether or not I should pony up for Dual-Talents
  • Hunter and Warlock pets should probably get Expertise from somewhere
  • I can still get myself into trouble with "aggressive" pets
  • ignoring raiding and the economy, Engineering is definitely the best profession :P
  • Gnomes should learn to enter water less enthusiastically so we don't all drown :)
I think my next character will either be my Priest or perhaps a Rogue. I haven't really decided, but my Priest is already at level 70. Hmmmm.


Patch 3.2: Over and Out

After reading Vok's post over at Unreal Realities, I got to thinking about this last content patch and what it meant to me. I thought I'd take this opportunity to go over the goals I wanted to accomplish and just general feelings about how the game continues to shape up.

Patch 3.2 brought us the "Call of the Crusade". Right off the bat I was quite a bit less nervous and much more excited than I was when 3.1 brought us "Secrets of Ulduar" (the patch that killed The Pacemakers, once upon a time my first and only raiding guild). I was in a position to experience the content from day one and for a time all was well. :)

I really regret not starting the Argent Tournament dailies right away. I didn't realise just how many mounts, pets and tabards they would eventually have on sale. I currently have 5 mounts, 5 tabards and 1 pet that I still need to buy, totally 790 Champion's Seals. It sounds ridiculous and at times I feel like I'll be doing these dailies for the rest of my life. :S

Trial of the Champion was so very promising at first, and now it is my bane. I PUGed for weeks trying to get myself the Banner of Victory trinket (which would still be a decent upgrade for Vocah). I have since ceased advertising my ability to tank. Many players can be disobedient and incompetent (myself included on a bad day) but this just felt like my efforts to get a good trinket were being sabotaged at every turn. To date I have yet to actually even see the trinket drop. :(

The gear introduced in Trial of the Crusader was very nice indeed. From a plate DPS perspective, it seemed like there was actually only a single upgrade for each slot, so building my loot wish-list was easy as pie. It did mean that there was a little more competition for certain pieces, so the fact that I am bringing gear available at Wrath's launch into Icecrown Citadel does get me down a little. I am generally happy with how the new gear went, especially since Onyxia increased our chances at getting somewhat decent melee weapons. :)

Raiding in 3.2 and 3.2.2 was extremely repetitive. I didn't even raid Onyxia's Lair back at level 60, and I became quite bored of her within a few weeks. There was very little incentive to experience Onyxia's Lair more than once. Trial of the (Grand) Crusader took place in the same single room as Trial of the Champion /yawn. Our guild had connection issues during Heroic Northrend Beasts, the gatekeeper to the more difficult variant and thus also all the good loot and achievements waiting further in. :(

I was very excited about the changes to Death Knights, especially the dual-wield Frost tree that wasn't over-powered. In fact, it turned out to be slightly under-powered compared to Blood and Unholy, but I'll only shelve my one-handers for Shadowmourne. I was hesitant to dual-wield weapons before 3.2 because it was overly imbalanced at launch and then completely nerfed into nothingness. 3.2 made it possible to play my Death Knight the way I wanted to. Hint: Gnomes look awesome with two weapons during Heroism:D

So, in summary, Patch 3.2 "Call of the Crusade" was worth :D :) :) :S :(. That's basically a storm cloud consisting primarily of silver linings. I was certainly kept busy during the this latest patch, and the things that really mattered to me (Death Knight balance and new raid gear) were addressed fairly well, even though I did feel bored for much of it.


Well Read?

I recently finished the Well Read achievement. Hooray for me!

I do feel like I completely missed the whole point of the achievement though. I certainly went all around Azeroth clicking on books, but I must confess that I did not actually read any of the text. It was so easy to simply click the Quest Helper check-box on the achievement and follow the dotted line to completion.

However, I do know a good portion of WoW lore, but mostly from looking up characters and items of interest whenever I encounter them in-game. There are probably many websites like this, but WoW Wiki is definitely my favourite. The comments at WoW Head are also very informative, but they have to be attached to actual items and NPCs, so it can be difficult to find information about historical events.

WoW.com (formerly "WoW Insider") has a several columns that deal with the lore of Warcraft. If you are like me and have not played every single Warcraft game, and have not carefully read and completed every single quest in WoW, then these are a great way to get all caught up. Whenever they have a new post available, I make sure to read the Ask A Lore Nerd and Know Your Lore columns.