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  • New things to do

    2010 - 10.29

    So I’ve found some new fun stuff to do, but you’ll probably think it’s an odd time to do it.

    My autophobic banker-DK, Tremble (pictured there before he found himself a decent tailor) has carefully ironed and bagged his fine daywear and picked up his old sword, and is now learning all about threat, tanking in Outland. I haven’t ever made it past 60 on a DK before, so at 62 Tremble is entering rarified air. I’m still not sure about the DK playstyle, either. I’m hoping at some point the management of runes and runic power, and the costs of the various abilities will just *make sense* but at the moment I’m largely clueless.

    Which I guess means that I could very well be one of *those* DK tanks who run about sans clue. It’s actually quite hard for me to tell at the moment — the game feels very undertuned at the levels I have access to. I’ve done four or five runs of Ramps and … er … the other easy one and there have been no wipes or major embarrassments.

    Now obviously I could chalk that up to being a natural tank, gifted, spacially aware, with armour that howitzer shells bounce off and so much threat it’d take a tactical nuke to remove those mobs, but… I’m not. I’m fumbling around, occasionally regularly hitting the wrong buttons. My favourite least-favourite thing to do is to fumble my rotation so that I accidentally press the button assigned to death grip midway through a fight, dragging a mob an impressive two inches closer to me. That typically happens mere moments before the party mage or warlock crits and attracts the attention an axe-wielding manic.  That said, it’s still actually quite hard to tell whether I’m actively bad, or just a bit clumsy. More-or-less everything seems to die in just a couple of GCDs, and given the scarcity of tanks, I suspect most groups will tolerate anyone who isn’t actively working against them. I’ve never been that keen on the “hey guys, how’s my tanking?” conversational gambit in random groups (it feels rather a lot like a passive-aggressive “tell me I’m great”) so I’m a bit stuck — I don’t have any guildies in the level range to inflict my noobosity on.

    I do have to feel for poor Tremble, though. Having spent the past six months or so comfortably ensconced in Stormwind, finely dressed and troubled only by his ghoulish minions’ poor dress sense and tendency to leap on unsuspecting passers-by, he’s now quite the most mismatched looking DK around. In the absence of decent plate heirlooms in my cupboards (and because I’m actually rather keen for him to get to 80), he’s been landed with some mail items. Some *caster* mail items. The coat rack-and-chestpiece formerly worn by my little spacegoat shaman Nepo, in fact, who is waiting hopefully for Bryn’s gnome mage to level up a bit so they can quest together. I’m so cheap.

    I’m *also* levelling Grammy, who when last mentioned was a teenage geriatric warlock. She’s now shot through the seasons and is nudging hard at 38 42 (what a difference a day makes).

    I know, I know, it makes absolutely NO SENSE to level a lowbie just a few short weeks from the complete revamp of the 1-60 experience. The thing is… well, the thing is, she’s just too much fun to play. Not so much in dungeons, where (unless I’m doing it completely wrong) the ramp-up time on her dots means that every mob is dead before any real damage is done (in fact, the last couple of dungeons I ran, I spent the bulk of my time spamming Rain of Fire and feeling fairly foolish) Now that she’s hit 40, I’ve picked up a destro offspec for her which seems to fare better in dungeons; with most of the groups I’ve run, Rain of Fire is still the go-to spell, but should our tank ever only have two or three mobs, immolate, conflagrate and shadowburn usually do the trick. Even though that *is* good fun, it’s not my main focus. Amazingly enough, I’m having a *blast* questing and grinding as an affliction lock. I watched one of Cynwise‘s videos a little while back, the one on drain tanking, and I thought “that looks like fun”. So I respecced to affliction, and gave it a go.

    Oh *boy* is it fun. Particularly post-patch, Grammy makes mincemeat of any “kill 20 <poor unfortunates>” or “collect 8 <organs> from <organ-free mammals>”. She’s currently hanging out in Stranglethorn, doing the Nesingwary quests; the biggest problem is depleting the available creatures too quickly. I’ve opted to stick with Konnie (her voidwalker) as the sacrifical bubble is very handy if things do start looking dicey but for the most part it’s just not necessary. Seriously, if you’ve never ‘locked before, check out that video. I challenge you to not find it appealing.

    Oh yes. With Tremble out in the field, I needed a new banker. Enter Tannin, businessdwarf, bon viveur (he prefers a glass of decent wine to a mug of ale) and hunter. The fabulous thing about hunters in the 4.01+ world is that they *start* with a pet. In the case of dwarven hunters, each is provided a friendly bear, free of charge. How lovely!

    But I was weak. Soooo weak. Or perhaps Tannin’s love for bad puns will grow ever more evident. In any case, should you be wandering the cavernous halls of Ironforge, decide the time is right for some commerce and make your way to the auction house, you might encounter a purple-suited dwarf with a fetching hat and a glowing axe. He’ll undoubtedly be friendly, but he’ll almost certainly introduce you to his bear, Behind1.

    Try not to be offended, it’s not what you think. That comma *is* important.

    --
    1. I know this is terrible. But once I’d thought of it I could think of NO other name. So I gave in []

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    7 Responses to “New things to do”

    1. Saga says:

      I know how you feel on the DK, and I admire people who seem to feel confident in playing them. Mine is 80, and I still feel like I’m flailing at times. Especially when tanking. Sure, I’ve only tanked a handful of times, and I guess I did reasonably well – but I still felt a bit.. hmm.. not quite confident.. the entire time. That whole rune thing just throws me off. I had like a set rotation how to start my group pulls for the most aggro, but sometimes one of them would miss (my gear isn’t ideal so I’m missing a percent or two in hit) and that would throw my entire rotation off *lol*

      Since the patch I’ve admittedly not even tried tanking. It’s too scary! Compared to warrior tanking and paladin tanking I just feel too much like I’m swimming in deep water but only just learned how to swim yesterday.

      Do enjoy your DK though, I bet you’ll get used to yours sooner than I get used to mine :P

      Oh, and about hunter pets.. having silly name is part of being a hunter! Personally I have a demon-hound looking wolf by the name of Giggles. And a silithid named Fluffy. Oh and a demon boar named Snuffles. (Yeah the demon thing must be a remnant of the warlock in me, I can’t keep myself from taming any demon looking thing!)

      As for the warlock.. all I can say is gogogo warlocks are awesome :P Though they did something weird to pets in the last patch. I don’t think you’ll notice at lower levels, but I notice at level 80 they take a lot more damage than before. I guess it’s a combination of everything being calculated off level 85 and them getting my stats rather than their own. Voidwalker must have lost a billion armour when he has to contend with only mine. Makes me sad though.. bloody demons won’t survive when I try to solo even TBC HCs :( (I survive better than them.. and voidie is meant to be a tank.. hmph! :P )

      • theanorak says:

        re: the DK, I do hope so.

        Before the patch, at least, I could paladin-heal well enough to fill-in if we needed a healer, and I was/should be competent enough DPSer on either the paladin or the mage. I’ve never tanked before, though, so I thought I’d like to give it a try.

        I have a junior bear tank (~27) on my old server who is partnered with Bryn’s priest, so the urge to level a druid is pretty low — plus if I was going to level a druid on my main server, I’d level a worgen druid as feral/feral so I could switch from wolf form to cat form.

        Levelling a warrior, whilst potentially fun, is made less attractive by the guild already having 3 warrior tanks (out of maybe 16 raiders). And levelling another paladin isn’t something I’m desperately keen to do (especially given that my rarely-played character in SAN is another paladin).

        So, a DK, with the added bonus of him being prelevelled to the late 50s by virtue of the starting area. Sold!

        I can’t say I’ve noticed my warlock pets being particularly fragile, but then again I’ve only recently started to focus on her, so I don’t have any meaningful comparisons (although I do have a lot more health than Konnie, my voidwalker, so perhaps that’s indicative). I’ve mostly just noticed them being awesome, to be honest — is the felpuppy running animation not the most enthusiastic run in the game?

        • Saga says:

          Oh don’t get me wrong – I’m not saying to try another tank than DK. They do seem really good after all. I think it’s rather a personal failing of my own that I can’t quite figure it out. Maybe what I need to do is level another one :P

          And the warlock pets.. I don’t notice it when questing or doing normal instances. It’s only once I went back to have my voidie tank Attumen in Karazhan that I realised that hmm.. he doesn’t hold aggro as well anymore (they removed the aoe taunt) and hmm.. isn’t he taking a lot more damage than bef.. oh, shit he’s dead!

          I agree that felhunters sure look happy and enthusiastic while running *lol* I just sort of expect to see a tongue hanging out of the corner of their mouth too :P

    2. Alas says:

      I think I admitted that I gave up on my DK altogether and let At log into my account and play her while I logged into his and played his mage? Yeah. That’s how much I didn’t get the whole DK thing. As long as you’re having fun, I’m sure you’ll get the hang of it all soon!

      I totally laughed at the pet name! So perfect for a dorf to have.

      • theanorak says:

        The scary thing is that I feel almost duty-bound to RP him, just a little bit, if only so I can eventually give him one glass to many and break out the “true” dwarf inside. I might be getting a little carried away, though.

        I sent a request from him to a scribe-guildie a couple of days ago for a huge pile of glyphs, as I realised that neither my DK nor my warlock had any glyphs at all; I might as well get all of them in one go to save time later, I thought.

        By the time he’d finished introducing himself, presenting his bona fides and making his request, I’d ran into the text limit for in-game mail 4 times.

    3. Tapelia says:

      Er… I may have a level 63 druid knocking about Outland that I’ve been threatening to learn to heal on forever. The poor thing hasn’t exactly seen much of the volatile Outland sky recently, so might be a bit sulky, but she’s there. Keeping my DK (that I cannot for the life of me play) company :)

      You don’t think the mobs are keeling over in fright of Grammy as well? I could imagine her like the witches in Stardust – devouring life/magic to make her young and using it up and ageing, and then repeating the whole process over.

      • theanorak says:

        Hehe. Then let’s get that druid out of retirement then! Pocket tank/pocket heals — perfect combo!

        And yes, I suppose it could be the sight of Grammy, particularly since I swapped her goggles for a hat — those eyes are *scary*.

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