Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Shadowlands’ Category

It’s almost the end of June, Dragonflight is not yet in open beta, and Blizzard is already announcing that it will launch by the end of the year?

With that announcement, the pre-orders are open, of course.
So far, I’ve gotten the second-tier version of three expansions: Warlords of Draenor for the Dread Raven (fancier Anzu) mount, Battle for Azeroth for the Gilded Ravasaur mount, and Shadowlands for the Eternal Traveler Transmogrification set. I’ve been quite happy with those purchases.
The only thing I really want out of the second-tier version for Dragonflight is the bundled level 60 Boost, to use for my Tauren Mage — though let’s be honest: I’m probably going to make that character, Boost her, and then just faff around with Mogging her while continuing to actively play my Blood Elf and Void Elf Mages as co-mains.
The Mog stuff is in the third-tier version. The Diadem of the Spellkeeper headpiece just isn’t my style. I rather like the Dragon Wings backpiece Mog, especially since it comes in all five Classic dragonflight colours by default. I’m already imagining a revisit of the “Dragon Princess” series I did with my Blood Elf Priest using those wings.
If I got the third-tier version of Dragonflight, I’d essentially be paying $20 for the level 60 Boost and $20 for the Dragon Wings… I think that’s acceptable — I’ve been satisified with the $20 I spent for the Celestial Observer’s ensemble.
I don’t plan to make that purchase, however, until after I’ve 1) gotten my Fall classes ready to go, 2) done the Korthia Campaign, and 3) done the Zereth Mortis Campaign.

Read Full Post »


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.

Read Full Post »

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).

Read Full Post »

My Horde Mage is supposed to be working on the Kyrian Campaign. She’s done Chapter 3 — and is horrified by the implications of Scourge presence in Lakeshire. I keep thinking “tonight I’m going to do Chapter 4”, and then I keep doing other things instead.

As soon as she’d finished up the Necrolords Campaign, my Alliance Mage went back to the Venthyr. When she was in the Venthyr earlier, she’d hardly touched Sanctum upgrades, only doing the Stage 1 Anima Conductor and reinforcing the Greater Greedstone. Upon returning to Sinfall, her first objective was to upgrade the Anima Conductor to Stage 2 and reinforce Darkwing Drills. When that was done, she recruited Laurent and got to work on activating and upgrading the Mirror Network all the way to Stage 3. After I’ve been to Korthia and gotten flying, I want to put both Mages in Venthyr and get working on doing Venthyr Travel Network Broken Mirrors with them until I’ve obtained the Soulbreaker’s Burnished Mantle & Sash. She’s just gotten the Mirror Network up to Stage 2.

Meanwhile, Kaurinka and Kamalia decided that they didn’t want to wait until they’d done the Night Fae Campaign to start working on the Queen’s Conservatory. After doing the introductory quests and reading the Wowhead Guide, I decided to backburner it with Kamalia until she gets her Mushroom Network — recently advanced to Stage 2 — fully upgraded. Kaurika, however, has now upgraded her Queen’s Conservatory to Stage 2 and is farming catalyst seeds while she gathers Anima for further upgrades. The main reward I want from the Queen’s Conservatory which has to be farmed — to my relief, the recolor of the armor set is not RNG-dependent, but can simply be bought for 12.5K Anima after fully upgrading the place — is the Spirit Tender’s Bulb, which is one of the possible rewards from Untamed Spirits with two Wildseed Root Grain catalysts active.

Read Full Post »

Or at least that’s what I’ve been trying to tell myself.
If I can just get through that last 9.0 Covenant Campaign (Kyrian), I can move on to the 9.1 and 9.2 story content.
Maybe I’ll even grind out my Progenitor Mage Tier set from Sandworn Relics and Cosmic Flux on Zereth Mortis first and then go back for the stuff I want from Korthia. And then, with Anima much more abundantly available from Korthia and Zereth Mortis than from the launch zones (or so I’ve been told), return to my 9.0 Renown Vendors shopping list, the Ember Court, and the Queen’s Conservatory as things to do during the wait for Dragonflight.
But when I feel like I’ve only got a little bit of time to play, it’s so easy to get distracted by just doing my favorite World Quests for Anima.

Read Full Post »

A story in screenshots. See also Kaprikka and Dornaa’s marvelous adventure
~*~*~




(more…)

Read Full Post »

I finished the 9.0 Necrolords Campaign last night. Doing this in ilevel 229 Zereth Mortis BOE gear from the AH sure made it easier than it would have been at the beginning of the expansion. There’s some value to being behind the curve 😛
When I was in the Necrolords with my Horde Mage, I upgraded the Travel Network all the way and concluded that it was useless for World Questing. I hadn’t managed to do any of the Campaign, however.
When I joined the Necrolords with my Alliance Mage, I originally thought I’d just ignore all Sanctum upgrades. I was determined to do the Campaign with this character, though. After I did Chapter 3 of the Campaign and got the first quest to start Chapter 4, I realized that the place I’d need to go to start Chapter 4 was right where the portal was for the first stage of the Travel Network. Hmmm…. Maybe it would be a good idea to do the Travel Network, even if I didn’t do anything else with this Sanctum…. So I put continuing with the Campaign on hold until I’d gotten the Travel Network completely upgraded. The Necrolords Travel Network locations are somewhat more relevant to the Campaign storyline than the Travel Network of the Venthyr or Night Fae; I have yet to do the Kyrian (whose Travel Network I find to be the most useful for World Questing).
The chapters about Bastion and the defeat of the House of Constructs were fantastic. I really appreciated the follow-up to the leveling story. The part with Alexandros at Agthia’s Repose, well, it answers some questions about why certain souls get sent to certain realms — and raises others.
The chapter in the House of Rituals was silly fun, and I totally wasn’t expecting the platforming vehicle quest — which frustrated me a fair few times before I finished it.
It was also fun to see the chapters that overlapped with the Venthyr Campaign from the other perspective.
Overall, I enjoyed this Campaign — and this Covenant — quite a bit more than I initially expected to. I still really dislike the aesthetic of Maldraxxus and the Netherlords, though, so now that I’ve finished the Campaign — and also my Necrolords Renown Vendor shopping list (which wasn’t very long) — I kind of want to leave and never come back. Except for my favorite WQs in the zone — Abombing Run, Mixing A Mess, Just Winging It, Drawing Out the Poison, the sneaking one in the House of the Chosen that I can’t remember the name of right now, and Amateur Night — and the Necrolords follow-up chapter in the 9.1 Campaign — and maybe collecting the Necrolords Korthia WQ set, I guess.

Read Full Post »

Ion Hazzikostas on Renown 2.0 in Dragonflight, from an interview with Hazelnutty, via summary by Wowhead: “…if you’re that outdoor world player who doesn’t do Mythic+, who doesn’t do progression raiding, all those players still want, deserve, and need gear progression of their own, and I think this is a more streamlined and elegant way to have those goals that you can work towards on your own pace…”
That player is me, and I am glad to be acknowledged and validated!
Having been so far behind the curve in Shadowlands that I was always riding the catch-up mechanics for Renown, I haven’t had the frustrations with it that others have expressed. If anything, I felt like it was a bit clumsy having both Covenant-agnostic zone faction Reputation and Covenant-specific Renown that both had to be ratcheted up. It was good that, in catch-up mode, Callings could contribute to both. From what little I’ve read, it seems like maybe the Renown iteration in Dragonflight is an iteration of both Renown and Reputation and might serve both purposes?
~*~*~
Which iteration of Talents are we on by now?
Let’s see, there was the Classic/BC version, and then I think there were some modifications to the tree for the Wrath/Cata version, and then we got the Mists rows which have persisted until now; and then there have been the Talent-like systems of Artifacts, Azerite Armor, and Soulbinds+Conduits.
From the information shared in this post and this post and this post, I am feeling cautiously optimistic about the new Talent system. It’ll be good to not have to choose anymore between a utility option and a throughput option in the same Talent row.
~*~*~
After we just had Venthyr, really Blizzard really Dracthyr???
I’m bound to roll a Dracthyr Evoker eventually to play with how the Class plays and to play with the racial customization options. She’s going to be named Kamalisaura and she’ll probably end up having a “phase” of her Draconic and Visage forms for each of the five Classic Dragonflight colors. I think I’ll probably look for versions of the scales (I keep wanting to call it “carapace” a la the Singers in Brandon Sanderson’s Stormlight Archive…) that look less tiger-stripey and more lizardy.

Read Full Post »

Here’s Kamalia, level 60 and all decked out in Zereth Mortis BOEs from the AH. She’s my sixth, and perhaps last, level 60 for this expansion. Having used a Broker Mark of Distinction to set her Renown with the Night Fae to 40 immediately after activating Threads of Fate, she reached level 60 already at Renown 65.

Anthem of the Elements

Anthemic set with Dazzling Spectacles, Turncoat’s Cape, Tihan (LFR), and Felbark’s Shin

I want to get Kam at least the Night Fae Campaign set and the pretty dark red & dark blue Korthia Campaign quest set. Maybe I’ll manage to get her the Night Fae Renown and Queen’s Conservatory sets and the Kyrian Campaign and Renown sets, or maybe not. I am getting weary of the Anima grind, though Gnomecore has reported that once in Korthia, the Anima accumulates faster. I’m not interested enough in the Sepulcher Shaman Tier set to go grind Sandworn Relics and Cosmic Flux in Zereth Mortis for it.
Though I’ve brought Karaelia and Kaohana out to Bastion, the thought of actually leveling them seems very wearying, at least at this moment. Instead, my next leveling project will be to get my Highmountain Tauren Druid, currently at level 41, to level 50 so that I can finally, two expansions later, get that Heritage Armor. I am contemplating the notion of using the Boost that will come with purchasing 10.0 to Boost her to 60 — so I can take a Mulgore Tauren, Farseer Kamalia, and a Highmountain Tauren, Archdruid Kasheena, to 10.0. My Mulgore Tauren Druid, Kerisa, would then be retired — at least until I start really missing her…

Read Full Post »

Cloth outfits I have made organized by style of a key item. Most of these are chestpiece collections, a few are shoulders, and a sprinkling of other items such as pants or hats. Collections are grouped by expansion in which the style was introduced, not by original date of the post.

Multiple Expansions

Classic/Vanilla

Burning Crusade

Wrath of the Lich King

Cataclysm

Mists of Pandaria

Warlords of Draenor

Legion

Battle for Azeroth

Shadowlands

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »