Posts Tagged ‘retrospective’

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Seri sez: This Week in (WoW) History…

February 12, 2009

Usually a patch week brings numerous topics to the table for discussion, but since there was only one Priest-related change in 3.0.9 that makes for a kind of slim topic. (Inner Fire duration increased to 30 minutes & cannot be dispelled, in case you missed it.) So instead of talking about this week’s patch, I thought I’d take a little trip down memory lane and see what was happening about this time of year in (WoW) history.

February 2008
spam
Blizzard wins lawsuit against Peons4hire. I remember being sooo happy about this, because those Peons4hire spammers were incredibly persistent and annoying. I’m not going to take a stand here for or against buying/selling gold but I am firmly against in-game advertisements, whether they come in whisper or mail form. I remember the days when I had to install an addon to easily report spammers… sadly, by the time Blizzard implemented built-in easy spam reporting for mail and whispers the problem was not nearly as virulent (thanks to various real-life litigations like this one and mass account banning).

Sunwell (Patch 2.4) released on PTR. It’s hard to believe that it’s been less than a year since Sunwell was introduced, but since we’re just now hitting the 1 year anniversary of the patch hitting the PTR… wow, it really has been less than a year. It seems like I spent a year in there on Kalecgos alone. I hated that damn dragon with every fiber of my being. In fact, I really wasn’t that fond of Sunwell in general, but I think a lot of it had to do with the sheer amount of trash between the front door and the first boss (and the fact that our GM felt it was important to farm said trash regularly before we even started working on Kalecgos). It seems like it was also around this time that there was a buzz in the Priest community about the possible introduction of Holy Form, because of one of the abilities of a mob or boss somewhere in Sunwell. Sadly, that never came to pass.

WotLK Bestiary unveils the Shoveltusk!!!1! Yeah, I know, I wasn’t very excited either. However, looking back at the bestiary page now I see that they never did follow through with unveiling Darkfallen, Ice Trolls or Proto-Dragons. Wait. What the hell is a “Darkfallen”? (Wowwiki to the rescue.) Oh, okay.

February 2007
blue ribbon
World first guilds began making their first forays into Serpentshrine Cavern in February 2007, merely a few weeks after TBC’s launch mid-January. As anyone who has completed the attunement chain for SSC can attest, just getting 25 people all the way through it in that time is in and of itself an accomplishment, not to mention getting from 70-80 before even being able to start. I still remember the dreaded attunement chart that someone put together for TBC, and how my eyes crossed trying to figure everything out. Heck, I got so frustrated by trying to figure out which TBC instances required keys and how to get them that I all but gave up on instances for a few weeks after hitting 70 on my Druid and leveled an alt. (Which, ironically enough, was Seri! Heehee.) For what it’s worth, the world-first Vashj kill was at the end of March.

Blizzard gives a sneak-peek into Black Temple. I guess February has just been THE month for introducing or previewing new raid content. Blood elves, demons and orcs–oh my! I wasn’t following raid development all that closely back then, but the BT patch did bring something else that I was very interested in at the time… Epic Flight Form for Druids. Oh yeah, and Nether Drakes. Also… Ogri’la and Skettis content. This was a big patch!

February 2006
abacus
February 2006 has the distinction of being the month Blizzard figured out how to disable new character creation on realms with queues. I don’t know how exciting that is, but I remember when it happened. I remember queues in general. I was happy to forget about them until they started popping up again on my server recently. Death to queues. (Yeah, I know… queues are slightly preferable to server crashes due to load issues.)

However, something very interesting (and topical) DID happen in February 2006: Priest talent changes were announced! Discipline got an overhaul back then, and Power Infusion was inroduced as the new 31-point talent. I wish I had a snapshot of the talent tree back then so I could look at it alongside the current one, just for nostalgia’s sake. Of course, I didn’t play a Priest back then but… I can still be nostalgic, damnit! It’s hard to imagine the talent trees being so short.

Blizzard previews Blackwing Lair with a gameplay trailer. Although BWL wasn’t released until Patch 1.6, they did give us a sneak peek in February 2006. Again, with the new content previews in February! If this doesn’t take you back, I don’t know what will.

Had enough yet? But wait… there’s more…balloons

February 2005

Here’s one for our International readers: World of Warcraft launches in Europe! Huzzah!

Blizzard releases information about the upcoming Honor System and Battlegrounds. It’s hard to remember battlegrounds and the honor system not being part of the game, but back in Feb ’05 it was still under development and a pretty hot topic. I remember being generally mystified by it, because I’d never really done PVP before outside of first person shooter type games. However, I do remember the insane pitched battles in Hillsbrad Foothills after the honor system was released and the server-crashing lag that resulted. Ah, those were the days. I really wish they had kept Dishonorable Kills to discourage high level characters from ganking lowbies.

…you know, I really have been playing this game too long.

Anyway, I hope you’ve enjoyed this little trip back in time with me. In closing, I’d just like to remind you as we roll into this Valentine’s Day weekend: Buffs can be dispelled, but sockets are forever.

Ciao!

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Seri sez: I am what I am.

November 13, 2008

laena-full

Retrospective posts seem to be the order of the week around the WoWBlogosphere, and this is no different. I have so many great memories from both classic WoW and BC that when I sat down and went through my screenshot collection I was just overwhelmed. But as I sit here looking back, I also have my eye to the future and what the expansion holds for me. I thought perhaps you might like to get a glimpse into the evolution of Seri. (And yes, these are all screenies of my actual characters!)

It all began with a Forsaken Priest. I came to WoW from EQ, where my favorite chars were a Cleric and a Ranger. I thought healing was the best thing ever, so when I got together with my spouse (though we hadn’t married yet back then!) and some buddies to play WoW, I rolled a Priest on Blackhand. Sadly, this char only made it to level 25 or so because my interest in playing was somewhat greater than Mr. Seri’s. Also, our leveling buddies swiftly out-leveled us because we were only playing a few nights a week.

It’s probably a bad sign that such is a rather alien concept to me now.

moonlight

Once I was playing WoW more often (and had fully made the switch from EQ) I rolled a warrior on Whisperwind, where a bunch of folks from my EQ guild had settled. Why a warrior? I’d tried warriors in EQ but found it frustrating to do much of anything without a healer around. Warriors in WoW are much different, and I initially liked mine a lot. Although I have always had a horrible case of alt-itis, I leveled this char all the way to 40-something before my next big distraction came around: Roleplaying.

I started a new character on Scarlet Crusade shortly after it first opened, because as a long-time Roleplayer I wanted to see what Roleplaying in WoW was like. I don’t remember why I picked Mage for my first char on SC, but… it stuck. I started out playing there one night a week, but over the course of a few months I was hooked and eventually made the swap full time. I loved the flavor that Roleplaying added to the game, and I met a lot of new people that made my journeys through Azeroth so much more engaging. I began to write stories about my characters and build backgrounds for them. What fun! My Mage was my first 60, and the first char I ever raided with. Of course, this was back when raiding Stratholme and Scholomance was all the rage. Yes, that’s right… we used to take 10 people in there at the same time and thought it was challenging.

krys-60I also made my first foray into larger scale raiding with my Mage. I joined a community raid group (with Jov and some other folks from our guild) and took my first steps into Zul’gurub; I still remember how nerve-wracking that first trip was. Little did I know what a big role raiding would play in my future, once I got used to it! My Mage made it as far as MC before I just lost interest in her. Part of it was having someone who had become a good friend to me quit the game, and part of it was an inferiority complex regarding another good friend who is hands down the best Mage I have ever had the fortune to play with. Have you ever met someone who just got their class on a level so high that you felt completely and utterly outclassed? Yeah, that was me. I’m sad to say that even when I picked up my Mage again in TBC I just couldn’t make a connection with her. She never made it past 66.

kat-2007

Leaving the Mage behind wasn’t terribly hard, because I was completely and utterly enamored with my Druid. I had leveled her quietly after my Mage hit 60, just for something to do and because Druids seemed neat. Little did I know! I don’t remember having as much fun leveling any char as I did leveling this one, and it was mostly solo at that. Somewhere in the 50′s I developed a crazy fondness for Balance. This was before Moonkin form, even. I was Balance before Balance was cool. When I started raiding with my Druid, it was pretty much game over for my Mage. She quickly turned into my main and was for a long time… probably the longest of any of my mains to date. With her I saw MC, BWL, AQ, Naxx… all primarily as a healer because that’s what our raid group needed. It was my Druid that taught me to love healing again, after so much time spent doing other things.

It wasn’t until BC launched that I went back to my Boomchicken ways, and I remember being just blown away at the difference in how the spec played with the new talents. Over the course of my Druid career I did it all… caster dps, melee dps, tanking, healing… I loved being a hybrid, someone who could fill any role even if tanking was not my favorite thing to do. (By this time I had transferred my old Warrior over to Scarlet Crusade and finished leveling her.. if I needed a tank, I tended to prefer to use her!)

seri-st

And then a funny thing happened. Ok, well, it wasn’t particularly funny but as my interest in raiding became more dominant and my interest in Roleplaying dropped to pretty much nil I decided to join a raid guild. Well, to be fair, I was already a member of said raid guild, but it was a Horde guild and I was just a part-time raider. I decided to take the plunge, make the switch and be a full time Horde raider.

I had created and leveled Seri back when BC launched, leveling her alongside a friend who had basically made a swap to full time Horde. (I mentioned the alt-itis, right?) It was a part time gig for me, much like my Mage dabbling back when I was test driving Roleplaying. The result was similar too. My enjoyment of my Priest came to rival my enjoyment of my Druid, to the point where I was able to set my Druid aside and fully embrace la vida Priest(a).

The rest, as they say, is history.

Now, here I stand at another crossroads. The dawn of a new expansion is a time when raiders think about shifting roles and doing something different. Although I still love healing (and my Priest), I feel like the time has come to do something different for a while. And so, on this day when we all (or most of us, presumably) take our first steps into Northrend, I’m going to be taking my first steps with my Rogue instead of my Priest.

Don't be a stalker!

Why? I like to stab things. But, more than that, after playing a healer for so long playing a Rogue feels rather liberating. The only buffs I have to worry about are self-buffs. I don’t have to rez anyone (jumper cables not withstanding). No one complains that I didn’t heal them fast enough to keep them alive. In general, my having an off night shouldn’t mean the raid wipes on farm content all night. It sounds like Nirvana to me.

But fear not, gentle reader, we’re not going to be turning World of Snarkcraft into the Holy Priest and Rogue hour. I still have a lot of love for my little Priest, and I’ll continue to share my Priest/Healing knowledge and perspective with you every Thursday. I hope that you all have as much fun leveling to 80 as I intend to. Just remember, as you venture out into the world of launch day queues, crashes and highly competitive questing, the best way to tag a mob when there is a lot of competition is SW:D.

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Jov sez: Sappy Sentimentality, Just in Time for Wrath

November 11, 2008

Jov, another faction, circa lv 35As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a horde re-roll.  Specifically, Joveta was created in March of 2008.  Before that, I’d been playing an Alliance priest, druid, and sundry other alts since March 2005, and all of that time was spent in the same guild, playing with the same people.  It was an RP guild, and a family.  WoW was my first MMO, and almost my first computer game.  I had no idea what I was doing.  They taught me what instances are, donated cloth and greens to help me level my tailoring and enchanting, and some even chipped in for my first mount.  They taught me how to play, not just how to heal, but how to exist in a MMO world.Alliance shadow, circa TBC launch

I was bit by the raid bug in December 2005.  A community group made up of members of small RP and Friend and Family guilds took me in, and I healed my way through every encounter in Vanilla WoW excepting C’thun and Naxx.  They had patience with me when I dabbled in the darkside about a month before TBC’s release.

Like many others, the release of TBC was a time of upheaval.  For several months, my guild had been slowly bleeding members.  We didn’t actively recruit, and the slow trickle of people moving on, leaving the game, and other things outpaced the influx of new members.  TBC’s release exacerbated the problem.  We went from regularly having upwards of 20 people on a night to 5-10.  People went hordeside, or found new guilds, or stopped playing.  It was alright, the people I still saw were some of my favorite people in the game, and the guild remained a family to me.alliance, current

When we started raiding with an alliance made up of friendly guilds leftover from my time raiding pre-TBC, some people began logging in again, but we lost much of the feel of the guild as we became less an RP guild that raids than a feeder guild to gear up and app to raid guilds.  It was disheartening to myself and others, and all of the people I was closest to decided around that time to make their horde characters their mains.  I took the plunge, rolling a blood elf priest (for the better quest zones and the mount.  On their own, I actually dislike blood elf models and animations) hoping that playing my favorite class would provide incentive to actually level.  At the time, I had no real intention of raiding in this expansion, though I joined the raiding guild all my friends were in as a Friend/Family member.Jov current

I went on my first Hyjal run in early July as a spot-filler, still wearing late-Outlands blues interspersed with a few Kara epics.  I must have done something right, because by the end of the month I was moved from our Friend rank to a trial raider.  With my friends horde-side, I’ve cleared all of T6 content excepting Kil’Jaeden, who I expect to drop (his pants) tonight.  (edit:  He did.  Go team!) I love everyone in my guild dearly, though sometimes I do get sappy missing all the people and characters I knew over my time in WoW.

  • Yuki:  You took some noobs under your wing back before any of us hit lv 30, and from that time we never did a raid or instance without you.  You taught me to not-suck, and you were some of the most fun RP I had across multiple alts.  I only wish you played horde on Scarlet Crusade instead of Feathermoon.
  • Kat:  I know I still talk and banter with you regularly horde-side, but I miss the goggles, engineering, and boomchicken shenanigans we got into over the years.  I hope your plans work out for the best.
  • Karwyn:  A tauren with a ring on the horn is awesome, but I often miss the night elf in skank plate, monster-sized BWL shield, and braid permanently affixed to the boob.
  • Oreo:  Your relentlessly cheery disposition when faced with adversity coupled with your amazing talent on any character you choose to play makes me feel honored to be your friend.
  • Sami:  Many names, many characters.  I know it sometimes feels we snark more than talk, but you’ve always been there for me.  I only hope you can say the same for me.
  • Naimh and Eirik: I don’t know where you transferred, and I’ve not seen you since well before TBC’s release, but you two always made me smile.
  • Dudds:  Thank you for always carrying around your Wrath set to change into at a moment’s notice.
  • Everyone else:  I’ve not always been the easiest person to get along with, but to those I rarely see:  I miss you all.  To those I still see:  I love you all.  To everyone reading:  I thank you all.
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