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Archive for the ‘Alts’ Category

At last, the final two of the thirty-six Class & Specialization specific Artifact Weapons are mine.

The Holy Paladin quest took me once again to Tyr’s Fall in the Whispering Forest of Tirisfal Glades. With the big bad of the other two questlines not there at all and a different big bad for this questline, it is clear that the sequence of events there was Arms Warrior, Shadow Priest, Holy Paladin. So what were the secret Paladins doing while the Arms Warriors and Shadow Priests were poking around there? Going to Dalaran to get help, I guess.

I’m pretty rusty with Paladin healing, and that combined with the changes to the class mechanics meant that my party wiped on our first attempt at the final boss. I might have to re-evaluate my talent choices for that spec before I try to take it into a dungeon.

As expected, the Retribution Paladin quest went back to the Broken Shore.

I won’t spoil what happens, other than to say that it appears to me that even though I collected the Paladin Artifacts in the order Protection, Holy, Retribution, the canonical order in which the Highlord acquired the Artifacts seems to have been Ashbringer first, then the other two. The Ashbringer questline segues most directly into the post-acquisition-of-first-Artifact event at the Order Hall, and the Highlord going to get the Ashbringer first would give the Battlelord time to be first to Shield’s Rest and the Battlelord and the High Priest time to have their own adventures at Tyr’s Fall before the Highlord gets there.

I do still have to acquire the Underlight Angler before my Artifact collection will be 100% complete, but I’ve got a lot of fishing left to do to get it, and spending my playtime doing nothing but fishing is usually an activity I reserve for when I want to play WoW on Sunday.

Now that I’ve completed this Alt Progression goal, the next two Alt Progression objectives are to complete a zone and get its Pillar of Creation and to level to 103 and complete the chapter of the Order Hall Campaign that opens up at that level. Because they’ve all already done the Falling Star questline, doing these two things will complete unlocking all the tints for the default appearances of the Artifact Weapons.

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With only three characters remaining, I decided to push them all through the Falling Star questline — get that mini-progression goal wrapped up — before having them continue on to level 102 and acquiring the rest of their Artifact weapons.

As I’ve taken more and more characters through the Battle of the Exodar, I’ve begun to imagine that what really happened was something like this: (more…)

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I hadn’t originally intended to acquire all the Artifacts because some of them are downright evil… as in, Shadow Priest, all the Death Knight, and all the Warlock. I don’t want to be carrying those things around, let alone using them. In the case of the Death Knight and Warlock, the Artifacts that I consider to be the least of three evils fortunately align with my favored specs for those classes.

As I’ve been beginning to acquire Artifact weapons for multiple specs for each class — and have completed “Arsenal of Power” for Shaman, Mage, Hunter, and Demon Hunter — however, my Collecting bug is starting to itch to get all the Artifacts.

It’s been fun to see all the little stories — though some are certainly more interesting than others. Although I know that some of the Artifact quests revisit the same places and even, in some cases, the same bosses, I’m beginning to want to see them all… even the downright evil ones.

Additionally, I’ve read that in most (if not all) of the Order Hall Campaigns, a quest to begin one of the later stages of the Order Hall Campaign is given by the same NPC who gives out the quests to go get the other Artifact weapons. If you haven’t gotten the other Artifacts and are stubbornly ignoring the quests to do so, you might miss that Campaign quest and then find yourself stuck in your Campaign. Thus, it is to your advantage to just do all the Artifact quests, even if you don’t plan to play as any of those other specs.

I can kinda-sorta make an in-character rationalization/justification for picking up even the Artifacts I don’t really want in-character from the evidence I’ve seen so far that there is often another person or group — and usually a bad one — either in possession of or trying to obtain the Artifact, so it wouldn’t be the responsible thing to do, as the leader of my Class Order, to leave those Artifacts in the hands of those other persons or groups. I should at least bring them to the relative safety and protection of my Order Hall.

I don’t want to do the [Shadow Priest, Affliction Warlock, Demonology Warlock, Blood Death Knight, Unholy Death Knight] quests “in character” as my characters, though, if that makes any sense at all. I’d want to do them as, well, someone else. Some sidekick, a lesser champion of the Order, rather than my actual character herself. For my Priest in particular, I have been thinking that if I do go get the Shadow Priest Artifact with her, I’ll temporarily change her entire appearance at the Barbershop — with a Mog to match, of course — to be my short-lived Shadow Priest alt, Kazithra (Kregga’s mom), while I do the questchain. I’d also temporarily change the appearances of my Death Knight and Warlock to go get the other Artifacts for their classes, though I have less concrete ideas about what alter-egos I want to create for them.

But then once I have those evil Artifacts that I don’t really want to be carrying around with me, what do I do with them? Can Artifacts be stashed in Void Storage?

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Kamalia hasn’t gotten much play this week. Being so close to the first Legion alt-leveling milestone of getting each Class its first Artifact weapon and to level 101 to unlock Champion missions at the Order Hall, I wanted to get that done.

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I chose Arms first with my Warrior because Mr Rossi says it’s the best for leveling and World Questing.

Skyhold is aesthetically lovely. As much as my Warrior has been intrigued by the Vrykul ever since Northrend, though, she finds Skyhold rather lonely with only Valarjar and Val’kyr there. And despite previous encounters with Titan structures and constructs, it wasn’t until she unexpectedly found herself in Skyhold, staring at Odyn, that the works of the Titans caused her to wonder about the reality of the Earthmother. Perhaps if she’d been to Ulduar with Khadgar and Brann to see Magni, she might not be feeling so unsettled. But only my Paladin, Shaman, Druid, and Mage did that. I might have to come up with an in-character motivation for my Warrior to go talk to Archivist Elysiana to do that questline (at least the Ulduar part of it)…

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It was a thoroughly delightful surprise to discover that the Tauren Seers were involved in the first stages of the quest chain for the Protection Paladin Artifact. Some of the later quest chain text speaks of “a great warrior” who went to one of the locations before the paladins do. I’m guessing it was probably for the Protection Warrior Artifact (because I went somewhere quite different for the Arms one) but the warrior didn’t go to exactly the same specific location, just the same general area, so my headcanon can be that my Paladin did in fact go there first.

This sword and shield are so pretty that I don’t feel sad about not being able to use the Alliance movie tie-in weapons with my Tauren Paladin anymore 😛

As for the Paladin Order Hall, now that I’ve actually been to the Sanctum of Light, I totally get what I’ve read about Priests being utterly smitten with jealousy when they get to visit the Paladin place as part of their Order Hall Campaign. The Mage place is still my favorite Order Hall, but the Paladin place is a very close second!

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I’ve read that the Balance Druid and Affliction Warlock Artifact questlines are substantially similar in much the same way that the Disc Priest and Arcane Mage Artifact questlines are. After playing through the Balance Druid questline, I’d guess that the first few quests are different for Balance Druids and Affliction Warlocks, but that after you meet up with Revil Kost in Duskwood, they are essentially identical. I saw a Gnome Warlock running around in some of the same places that I was investigating.

I can’t think of The Scythe of Elune without wanting to call it “The Scythe of Elooooone“, ala Oxhorn (one of the very early movies, though I don’t remember exactly which one anymore).

In one of the other treasure chambers of the Karazhan Crypts, I found this strange statue.

I have never, ever seen this image before. What is it? Where did it come from? Something about the style of it makes me wonder if perhaps it might have been designed to be part of Yaungol lore, in a questline that got cut? Or does it portend some as-yet-unknown Tauren faction?

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With the first milestone completed, my next objectives are to level the characters who want multiple Artifacts to 102 so I can get the rest of the Artifacts I want to collect and to bring Light’s Heart to each Order Hall. In my headcanon, though, Light’s Heart will actually be at the Fel Hammer because my Demon Hunter is the primary character with whom I intend to pursue the continuation of that quest chain at level 110.

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As I mentioned in my previous post, Kamalia recently reached the point with her Leatherworking where she needs to buy the Rank 1 Dreadleather and Gravenscale patterns. These patterns are purchased with crafting mats, and some of the patterns cost enchanting dust or ore in addition to leather or scales. I suppose that I could just trade Blood of Sargeras for those things… but I’d rather use it as an excuse to bring my Enchanting alt and one of my Mining alts to the Broken Isles.

Kaohana’s bags were getting stuffed with Broken Isles greens that Kamalia had sent her, so she was needing to come to New Dalaran for profession training very soon anyway.

I’d read that the Discipline Priest Artifact questline was substantially similar to the Arcane Mage one, and I saw a Priest or two running around in the same areas when I was doing the Aluneth questline with Kaelinda. I’d thought, oh, well, maybe they just take place in the same area, but the quest givers and directions and motivations are different. Alas, no; the Light’s Wrath questline was, indeed, almost identical, with the only differences being based on the identity of the uncontrollable staff and its powers. I must confess that with Light’s Wrath being a Scarlet Crusade-created item, I’m a little disappointed that I didn’t have to Discipline my way through any of the Scarlet Crusade strongholds — like, say, Tyr’s Hand — to get it.

I’d also read that the Priest Order Hall is… underwhelming compared to some of the other class halls. I was trying not to be pre-biased by opinions from other players, but, yeah, Netherlight Temple does seem rather… plain… and… small… compared to, say, the Hall of the Guardian. It is much more sparsely decorated than the others, which is okay, I guess, for the austere aesthetic of many priestly orders, and it seems to have fewer notable NPCs — all of which make it seem like there will be less opportunities to be delighted by suddently noticing a detail that I’d overlooked before.

Of my Miners, I decided to bring my Rogue. Partly I chose her to follow my plan of bringing my alts to their Order Halls in inverse order of my longer-term interest in playing them. Partly I chose her because Stealth is a definite plus when one is a lowbie who just wants to run around mining. And partly I chose her because even though she is nominally my Gnomish Engineer, I haven’t really put a lot of effort into that crafting profession. She is, therefore, the least likely of my Miners to begrudge having to share the ore she collects with someone else.

Now the question is — how does Kelisanna resist getting corrupted by these blades in the same way that Dread Admiral Eliza was?

I’m also thinking that although I don’t plan to spend any time playing as Assassination, I might go get the Kingslayers when Kelisanna reaches level 102 just to see the little story about Garona.

Not having spent any time or effort on farming Ravenholdt rep with my Rogue, I am not particularly attached to the idea of Rogues Belong At Ravenholdt. In fact, I rather like the Hall of Shadows. It feels akin to the Thieves and Assassins’ Guilds of Ankh-Morpork.

Kamalia went to Azsuna first because I’d read that that was where all the early Profession quests were going to send you anyway.
Kiralaira went to Azsuna first because she wanted to check up on her Illidari.
Kaelinda went to Azsuna first because of her interest in ancient elvish language and magic.

Kaohana went to Stormheim first because of her fascination with the Val’kyr.
Kelisanna went to Stormheim first because as a Farstrider, she is my character with the greatest loyalty toward Sylvanas Windrunner.

I like most of Stormheim, with the vrykul and storm dragons and the Titan vaults and the grappling gun and whatnot, quite a lot. But, ugh, I dislike the opening sequence, with that ugly battle between the Forsaken and the Worgen, and the RAS and their chemical weapons — and I dislike even more being railroaded through it. I don’t like being Sylvanas’ toady any more than I liked being Garrosh’s toady. I won’t level my lowbies in the Forsaken zones; I won’t do the Forsaken questlines in Howling Fjord and the Dragonblight. So I did an experiment. I took my Demon Hunter, who had only been to Azsuna, and rode on her land mount all the way around the continent until I got to Stormheim. As I came down into Stormheim from Highmountain, I found a group of Kirin Tor mages… and they wanted to send me right back to Dalaran to talk to Nathanos Blightcaller. Blast! I’d been hoping that there was some way to skip that part of the zone, and just start at meeting with Havi at his hut in the Valley of Swords. *sigh*

Maybe what I’ll do is always select Stormheim first and push through the scenario and follow-up quests until I get the quest to meet with Havi — get all that nasty stuff out of the way ASAP, treating it, in RP terms, as purely a game mechanic and not something that anyone except Kelisanna actually participated in — and then go to the first zone that I actually want to do extensive questing in.

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Kamalia is at Artifact Knowledge 10, with 23 traits in Sharas’dal and 15 traits each in the Fist of Ra-den and the Doomhammer. She has relics for all three slots of all of her Artifacts. I just got to the point with her Leatherworking where I need my Enchanting alt and one of my Mining alts to come out to the Broken Isles and start working on their professions to get the stuff that Kam will need to buy the rank 1 Dreadleather and Gravenscale patterns. She’s not quite to Revered with the Valarjar or the Wardens yet, and I’d like to get her to Exalted with Highmountain. There’s a dungeon loot piece of shoulder armor that I’d like to use for Transmogrification that I haven’t seen drop yet, so I should try to run a daily Heroic with her until I get it. And then I think I’ll be pretty much “done” with Kamalia — for RP personality reasons, I’ve decided to pursue the Suramar storyline with my Mage and the Xe’ra/History of Illidan questline with my Demon Hunter — and I’m starting to feel ready to be “done” with Kamalia so that I can start playing with my alts more.

After having seen all of the Shaman campaign and the opening scenes of the Mage and Demon Hunter campaigns, I’ve decided that my primary, overarching goal for Legion is to complete all of the Class Order Hall campaigns.

Before Legion launched, I had a plan for how I was going to manage my alts. I was going to bring them all out to the Broken Isles, get their first Artifact weapon, and establish their Order Halls, one by one, starting with the alts that I have the least overall interest in playing and ending with the alts that I thought I’d want to do a lot of Legion stuff with. After that, I would play with whichever character I felt the most like playing with in the moment.

Then in the early days of Legion, I read posts by folks who’d hurried to get all their alts through those initial stages and were feeling totally overwhelmed by all the lore of the Artifact storylines, too overwhelmed to process it all. I decided that maybe I’d better not try to rush all my alts to the Broken Isles, but rather space them out and let myself have time to savor each character’s unique stories.

A little later, it became apparent that just getting to the Broken Isles, getting that first Artifact weapon, and getting into the Order Hall wasn’t really going to be enough for me to feel like I could just let a character idle in her Order Hall — I would want to get each character to level 101 to get the first pair of Champions and open up the Order Hall missions. Gnomecore calls this “The Pawn Move”. I took my Demon Hunter out to the Broken Isles first of all my alts, and having her sitting in the Fel Hammer at level 100 felt… pointless. My Mage was already level 101 by the time I took her to the Broken Isles, and being able to do that Order Hall stuff immediately was more fun. I have a couple of other alts who have been doing old dailies and will probably reach 101 before I get them to the Broken Isles… but do I want to try to do that with all my alts? (Corollary question — are there any past expansion reps that I might want to work on with any of my alts?)

Now my Mage is level 103 and has the quest for the next stage of her Order Hall campaign. Steadily moving my alts through two levels at a time, to get to the next piece of their Order Hall campaign would be following Gnomecore’s Chessboard strategy.

What I’m trying to decide now is — do I want to do that? Or do I want to focus on one character at a time and try to do everything I want to do in Legion with that character before moving on to the next one?

If I’m only playing one character at a time, though, has Legion effectively broken my altoholism?

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Kamalia ticked over 100 different World Quests for Variety is the Spice of Life this week. Although I’ve finished Variety is the Spice of Life, I’ll continue to try to do World Quests that I haven’t done before. Kamalia also hit Revered with Court of Farondis, earning her Order Hall boots, and reached 100,000 AP (divided between three Artifacts), earning her Order Hall belt. For some reason I haven’t yet managed to get Black Rook Hold when running a random daily Heroic; I’ve been thinking about queueing deliberately for it just to finish off getting the Order Hall pants. That will only leave the shoulders from the Order Hall set… and getting to Exalted with Suramar will be a long haul.

I’ve been enjoying the World Quest system very much, even with the frequent repetition of some of the quests… will the Rivermane ever get those grubs out of their garden? That quest, like many of the World Quests, is a repeat of a quest I did while I was leveling. That’s okay — it seems to be the more whimsical and fun leveling quests that are getting repeated as World Quests — though I haven’t yet seen a return to The Chair of Bossing Around. There have been enough World Quests that aren’t quests I did while leveling to keep things interesting and novel, too.

Despite their limited variety, the Kirin Tor quests are some of my favorites; over the course of the three days when they’re up, I will do them all, not just the four I need to do to complete the Emissary quest on the first day. The Ley Race is just fun, and even when I’ve lost the path of the ley nodes, I haven’t yet managed to get far enough away that I get dismounted (I haven’t actively tried to do that, though). For me, the Enigma patterns are simple enough that I haven’t felt the need to resort to graph paper… I’ve occasionally wished that there were some harder ones that would send me running for some graph paper 😛 The hardest one, for me, is the flying bubbles because of the 3D movement and the difficulty of seeing exactly where my character is relative to the center of the bubble in 3D space. The flying bubbles at the bridge in Suramar was the hardest the first time I did it because it took me quite a while to figure out that to get into the first bubble of the chain, I have to drop down out of the bubble that the mage is in. Once I figured that out, though, the path is so short that I now find it easier than the one at Nar’thalas Academy. Plus, rep-of-my-choice is awesome. I’ve been always choosing Suramar, with the result that I am now a little under halfway through Honored with Suramar despite not even having managed to talk to Oculeth in the main story questline yet.

At the moment, if I do additional World Quests beyond the four for the faction-of-the-day, I’m prioritizing Artifact Power. I’d really like to get Sharas’dal fully powered up, and I’d like to pick up a second gold trait for the Fist of Ra-den and the Doomhammer, too. After Artifact Power, I’ll look for quests that reward relics. If it’s a life or frost relic, I’m hoping that it will proc upgraded ilevel for Sharas’dal. I don’t yet have relics for all of the sockets in the Fist of Ra-den and the Doomhammer. Occasionally I try doing World Quests as Elemental or Enhancement — but I always end up feeling so squishy that I go back to Resto (that trend makes me a little nervous to think about doing World Quests with a character who doesn’t have a healing spec). I’d like to get to the point where I feel comfortable doing World Quests — or even dungeon DPS — with my DPS specs.

Meanwhile, at my Order Hall mission table, I’m currently prioritizing Champion ilevel upgrade tokens because I want to have my best Champions ready to investigate Karazhan when Patch 7.1 arrives! My second priority for Champion missions is Artifact Power. I haven’t done any Champion missions that bring back quest-starter items for dungeons or raids yet.

Despite how much Kamalia still has to do, though, I’m starting to want to play alts, too. My Mage is out of Order Resources and needs to do some more questing in Azsuna. She’s almost to level 102 and being able to get her other two Artifacts. My Demon Hunter needs to start questing in Azsuna so that she can reach level 101 and complete the establishment of her Order Hall by recruiting her first two Champions and sending them on the missions to rescue her Troop Recruiter and Order Hall Upgrade people. And then there’s all the rest who are still twiddling their thumbs in their Garrisons on Draenor…

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