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Archive for the ‘Achievements’ Category


I finally finished the 9.0 Kyrian Campaign last night.

Bodhi Rana said he thought it was the best, and it was really good. I liked the check-in with Azeroth in which we find out that sure enough, the Scourge are running rampant now that the Helm of Domination is broken. I liked the reciprocal chapter with Maldraxxus. I liked the visits to Revendreth and Ardenweald. I was glad to be in ZM BOE catch-up gear for the trip to the Maw — that would have been so much harder in 9.0! I felt like it dealt with Uther in an okay way. Why Helya was involved, though — from her first appearances in the 9.0 Maw Intro scenario and the Bastion leveling story — seemed kind of shoehorned in (Helya’s gotta be in the Shadowlands somewhere, where are we gonna put her?). Although the Forsworn still have a point, and I still don’t want to be Kyrian, the Kyrian have grown on me over the course of the expansion. Mikanikos is still my favorite.

Overall, I rank my enjoyment of the 9.0 Campaigns as Venthyr = Kyrian > Netherlords > Night Fae. I wouldn’t have thought, at the beginning of the expansion, that Night Fae would come in last, but so it is. The Kyrian have reciprocal chapters with the Netherlords and visit Revendreth and Ardenweald. The Venthyr have recpirocal chapters with the Necrolords and visit Bastion. The Netherlords have reciprocal chapters with both the Kyrian and the Venthyr. The Venthyr and the Netherlords don’t go to Ardenweald. The Night Fae… do their own thing. They don’t make connections with the other realms. Looking back on it, the Night Warrior, Drust, and Bwonsamdi stories feel awkwardly braided together. The story has multiple downer moments, where we try to save an NPC and fail. And there are two trips to the Maw, one of which includes a trip to Torghast… I am not looking forward to replaying that with Kaurinka and Kamalia, though I will have to because I want the Campaign coloration of the Night Fae leather and mail sets.

I would say, On to Korthia and Zereth Mortis!, but now that I’ve reached the “stopping point” of having completed the 9.0 Campaigns, I’ve got to start spending my after-bedtime hours getting my Fall classes prepped. I felt like my Organic Chemistry lecture course needed a refresh, so I’ve switched textbooks, and my lab manual for my Organic Chemistry lab course is a few years overdue for an update.

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By the time I was able to log in yesterday night, I’d decided to save doing the new Blood Elf-exclusive questline until after I’ve finished the Kyrian Campaign, so that Kaelinda can be herself and so that my screenshots won’t be all cluttered up with other players. Instead, Kamalia went to see what was up with Calia Menethil and Lordaeron. It felt good to have Kamalia take the lead on a world-story-advancing questline again. The questline was consistent with current WoW storytelling, with a fairly shallow story and a rather silly big showpiece moment leading to “yay we won!”.

Lillian Voss is probably my favorite Forsaken character. I was pleased to see, when we went to find Lillian Voss in Brill, that she had Amalia Stone and Derek Proudmoore with her. I appreciated that continuity with the BfA story, even though those two characters didn’t do anything in the remainder of the questline. With Calia and Derek we see a Menethil-Proudmoore alliance… just not the one those families originally imagined. But what, then, of Calia’s secretly-wedded husband and infant daughter who were killed by the Scourge — a part of her backstory described in the Before the Storm novel, but never referenced in-game? **sigh**

The part in Maldraxxus seemed like it was made with the expectation that everyone doing it would already have flying (which I don’t). I managed not to die while kodo-charging through perilous terrain to get to the NPCs we needed to consult, but I was sure glad that as a Shaman, I’d be able to Reincarnate if I did. It also helped that I use the Comfortable Rider’s Barding as my standard mount equipment. Protection against daze-and-dismount while riding through hostile territory is much more valuable to me than water walking!

The surprise of the new “Dark Ranger” customization for Blood, Void, and Night Elves (Delaryn Summermoon is also present at Brill) is a fun little thing, good on the devs for sneaking that past the PTR. I was somewhat disappointed to find that the new skin tone and the red eyes are linked, rather than separate options — if you choose the skin tone, you also get the red eyes; if you choose the red eyes, you also get the skin tone; you can’t have purple skin and red eyes or the new skin tone and silver eyes.

As a Mage, I see the “Dark Ranger” customization as a way to finally make the perfect San’layn cosplay with the 25H ICC Mage Tier set:

(though upon checking, the Darkfallen NPCs in the Blood wing of ICC have blue DK/Domination-magic eyes, not blood red eyes)

Or, with the shortest ear length option, the perfect Venthyr cosplay:
All My Sins II


Sinful Inquisitor’s Vestments with Sinfall Venthyr Hood & Slippers, Soulbreaker’s Ebony Mantle, Silver-Thread Sash, Kael’s Dark Sinstone Chain, and Damnation
A variation on an outfit I originally made for my Warlock (#78).

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I’m a bit surprised that this hasn’t already hit the front page of Blizzard Watch with a big splash — it’s something the community has been asking for for years. Update: ah, there it is!
The hotfix is already live:



And maybe Kaumaleia should go take Salandria out for Children’s Week this year, for old times’ sake

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Kaelinda and Kaelyla both reached Renown 80 last week.

I ran them both through setting their Renown to 40 with each of the other three Covenants using Broker Marks of Distinction. Much to my disappointment, I discovered that the Renown 40 Covenant titles require you to be currently a member of that Covenant to use them. I also sent Broker Marks of Distinction to Kalaneia and Kamalia. Kalaneia is thrilled to now be able to style herself Baroness Kalaneia; Kamalia prefers to remain Farseer Kamalia.

Everyone who is at least level 50 — I checked with my Paladin and Priest, who are level 50 but haven’t been to the Shadowlands yet — now has access to all armor-type-appropriate Venthyr and Night Fae cosmetics that I have collected thus far. To get the rest, Kaelinda (as Kateleina) will need to get to Renown 80 with the Necrolords, and Kaelyla (as Kaelyra) will need to get to Renown 80 with the Kyrian.

In the process of getting to Renown 80, Kaelyla completed the 9.0 Night Fae Campaign. Although there were a couple of times when I kept dying, I quite enjoyed it — it was nicely very different from the Venthyr Campaign, and I liked the visits back to Azeroth locations (the visits to the Maw, not so much!). Getting that goal completed left me feeling energized to jump into the remaining two 9.0 Covenant Campaigns. So with this week’s reset, before I did anything in the Shadowlands, I took Kaelinda and Kaelyla to the Hall of Curiosities in Oribos, and Kateleina

and Kaelyra

emerged to begin gathering Anima, Souls, and Renown for the Necrolords and the Kyrian, respectively. I intend to build up those Sanctums to level 3 Travel Network, level 2 Anima Conductor with treasure box and extra world quest reinforced, and the other features activated but left at level 1.

Meanwhile, WoW’s Anniversary is on. Kasheena is once again camping out in the Caverns of Time for easy XP from Historian Ju’pa’s daily trivia quiz; for the last couple of years, Kaelyla was her companion in that endeavor, but this year it is Kamalia.

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I decided I might as well get it over with, so off Kaelinda went to Torghast. I did the first 6 floors of the Twisting Corridors three times in a row, then watched 20 minutes of cinematics and conversations between the faction leaders in Oribos, and now I’ll be ready to skip into the Patch 9.1 Campaign. With the content of these questlines being rather significant lore moments, not to mention required to unlock the next stage of the story, I was expecting their completion to be signposted by Achievements and was rather disappointed that they weren’t.
The cinematics were really very good, and I’m glad now that I’ve seen them for myself, so that I know the whole story — not just the key bits that were summarized in the beginning of the Patch 9.1 trailer cinematic.
~*~*~
So now that I’ve done this, I’m thinking maybe I want to hold off on doing Covenant campaigns with Kaelyla and Keliora and Kalaneia until Patch 9.1 drops and they can all skip Chapter 2. Kaurinka has already done Chapter 2 of the Night Fae campaign and is getting kind of tired of waiting to get started on the rest of it, so I’m thinking I’ll abandon my plan of running Kaurinka and Kaelyla through it in parallel and just get going with Kaurinka. If I can get Kaurinka through the Night Fae campaign and get the other three up to level 60 before Patch 9.1 arrives, that’ll be good enough. I’ll still want to do the other three 9.0 Covenant campaigns before I get into the 9.1 campaign itself, though.

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Kaurinka felt like she already knew Ardenweald. One winter when she was an adolescent, she had gotten pneumonia and nearly died. She remembered little of her illness, except that it had seemed that while her body lay delirious in her tribe’s longhouse, her spirit had wandered freely over the dark, snowy landscape around the camp. Out of the corners of her eyes, she’d caught glimpses of towering, sigil-scribed trees with swirling, starry canopies, and underneath them, smaller trees, or maybe bushes, laden with glowing blue globes — but when she turned to try to look at them straight on, she saw only the normal, familiar trees. What was that place?, she had wondered many times during all the years that had followed. And now, here she was. If I had managed to find that place, and walk between those trees, she realized, I would have died.

~*~*~

I felt much weaker in Ardenweald than I had in Bastion or Maldraxxus. Enemies were harder to kill and took off more of my health in the process. I was using Regrowth more-or-less rotationally just to stay alive, which makes me rather worried for the survivability of my other characters.

Although I did a couple of side quests in Bastion with both Kaelinda and Kaurinka, I ignored side quests entirely in Maldraxxus. I wanted to know the whole story of Ardenweald with Kaurinka, so she did all the side quests. In the process, I discovered that for each zone, there’s one Achievement for completing the main storyline of the zone and another Achievement for doing all of the side quests* — and that both Achievements are required for each zone to complete the Loremaster meta-Achievement. Unlike Legion and Battle for Azeroth, side quests are not optional for Loremaster**! Fortunately, Loremaster is an account-wide meta-Achievement, so I can continue with my original plan of having the character who will pledge to the Covenant of each zone do its side quests — Keliora will do all the side quests of Bastion, Kalaneia will do all the side quests of Maldraxxus, and Kaelinda will do all the side quests of Revendreth — while all the others just barrel through the main questline.

Between the Rest that I accumulated last week and doing all the side quests, Kaurinka was 58% through level 59 when she finished the main zone storyline. She’ll now slumber in Ardenweald until Kaelinda has activated Threads of Fate, then use Threads of Fate to select the Night Fae as her Covenant and level the remainder of the way to 60.

Lorewise, Ardenweald delivered on the themes of heartbreaking loss and sacrifice promised by its Afterlives short. (more…)

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By Sunday night, I’d run my three Mages, my Warlock, and my Priest through the first week of the Shadowlands pre-launch events and gotten them a 115 weapon from Nathanos. I hadn’t done my Druid yet, but it was late, so I thought, oh, I’ll just do that on Monday night and be ready for the second week of the event to start on Tuesday. Then the second week started on Monday. So Kerisa — or rather, Kaurinka — ended up being the first character to complete the full quest chain and earn the “Death Rising” acheivement. I’m not sure how many of the other five I’ll do the second week stuff with. The final boss of the quest chain was a lot easier to take down than I expected, even for needing to be tuned to be doable as a solo fight. So I guess I’m feeling kind of a lackluster level of threat? Or are Boomkins just OP for this fight, and my Mages will survive on the thinnest of margins?

I’ve collected all of the cloth Argent Conscript’s set. It seemed like the former Azerite slots — helm, shoulders, and chestpiece — propagated most quickly to characters of both factions; other pieces seemed to propagate more quickly to characters of the same faction than to characters of the opposite faction.

I’d been wondering where the zombies were. I’m glad that they’re only going to be disrupting one week of gameplay. I guess I could have kept my Highmountain Tauren Druid down in the Caverns of Time for Trivia Quiz XP all last week, after all.

Time to retire to the safety of my Garrison to do pre-launch housekeeping stuff like cleaning out my bags and being in a “zzz” area to log in on launch day to start building up Well-Rested for questing.

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When Shadowlands shifted from alpha to beta, I began to feel an increased sense of urgency to get Kaelyla leveled. By August 9th, as can be seen in that installment of the Sunday Mog Show, she’d blazed through Legion and obtained her Heart of Azeroth. This past week, with the pre-launch events arriving on the PTR, that sense of urgency got even stronger. So despite the imminent start of Fall Semester and being in crunch time to get my courses ready to go live on my college’s learning management system, I pushed through Kul Tiras* and establishing footholds in Zandalar and this happened on Sunday night:

She’s obtained her rank 1 Shroud of Resolve, and she’s got Nazjatar opened up for World Quests (including the Mardivas mini-games). Although she still has a lot of World Questing to do to upgrade her Heart of Azeroth and other gear, I’m more or less ready for Shadowlands.

* First I did the Heartsbane storyline in Drustvar through Arom’s Stand; then all of the Tidesage storyline in Stormsong Valley; and, getting to Tiragarde Sound last, turned in the quest to say hello to Cagney and then dinged in the Shrine of Storms dungeon before I got any further in Tiragarde Sound questing

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Three weeks later, I continue to have an incredibly difficult time disciplining myself to focus on schoolwork rather than noodling around in WoW.

I spent about a week and a half doggedly queuing for Kul Tiras dungeons until I got the robe and belt of both the green (Normal) and blue (Heroic) versions of the Kul Tiras cloth dungeon set.

I took Kinevra back to the Broken Isles to finish her Order Hall Campaign and earn the Archmage title.

I took Kaelinda back to Nazjatar and completed the Nazjatar Campaign mostly for RP reasons.

I took Kaelinda back to the Broken Isles and completed the Legionfall Campaign so that she could then get the Mage Class Mount — the Archmage’s Prismatic Disc is the only one of the Class Mounts that I’ve been really and truly envious of when I’ve seen other people riding it around.

Inspired by Gnomecore, I toyed with the notion of pushing Kaelinda through the Balance of Power questline. She already has the necessary Azsuna and Suramar quest progression and Azsuna, Stormheim, and Suramar reputation. I’m mildly interested in the Balance of Power appearance for Aluneth, but I don’t much care for the Balance of Power apperances for Felo’melorn or Ebonchill. So maybe I’ll come back to that sometime in Shadowlands.

While hanging out in the Hall of the Guardian, I saw a couple of other Mages wearing the cosmetic reward set for beating Deaths of Chromie and thought, O, I should go give that a try — and then I thought, nah, I don’t have that kind of time right now. That’s another thing that maybe I’ll come back to sometime in Shadowlands.

I’ve more or less given up on the idea of gathering any more stuff out of BfA LFR; I can’t afford to spend naptime or my nighttime hours idling in a 1-2 hour DPS LFR queue.

What I would still like to accomplish before the Shadowlands pre-patch arrives is A) get Kaelyla leveled and geared and ready to go and B) do some more Horrific Visions with Kerisa and get the second upgraded appearance for the Shroud of Resolve.

But for the next two or three weeks, I’ve really got to be disciplined and do schoolwork.

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On March 9, 2010, I made my first post as a WoW blogger.

Wrath of the Lich King was winding down and Cataclysm was on the horizon; that first post mentions plans I was making in anticipation of the coming changes of Cataclysm.

I had a few long-term WoW goals back then, and, over the past decade, I’ve accomplished them. I raided (in LFR) with a healer of every healing class during Mists. I got a Horde character of each of the existing classes to the level cap in Mists, Warlords, and Legion. I pushed an Alliance character to the level cap at the end of Cataclysm so that I could play the Alliance side of the pre-Mists events at Theramore; that character continues to be the only Alliance character that I actively play.

The introduction of LFR and Transmogrification in late Cataclysm revolutionized my WoW game. The upgrade of Transmogrification with the Appearances collections in late Warlords changed it further. The “Things my [Class] Wears” and “Sunday on the Promenade” series of posts have become this blog’s core content.

Once upon a time, I thought that when this big milestone occasion arrived, I’d put together something elaborate and special. Real Life has gotten in the way of that, however.

I landed my dream job; BTH and I bought a house and adopted two children. My blogiversary is now greatly overshadowed by its proximity to my older child’s birthday. The past couple of academic years have been rather rough and I’m running on the edge of burnout in my job — and that general exhaustion has propagated a feeling of being on the edge of burnout in keeping up with the “Sunday on the Promenade” series here on the blog, as well. So this small post of simple acknowledgement will have to do.

Here’s to TEN YEARS!

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