Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Not hardcore

Apparently if you have a level 80 already then you're hardcore - in that case being one blob short of 75 I'm definitely in the casual crowd these days.

I'm currently in the Grizzly Hills, having previously mostly completed Dragonblight, and in general I'm really enjoying exploring the new zones and doing new and fairly varied quests. Uncovering sights such as the Ebonhold (??) or visiting Dalaran have been real treats, but overlaying the whole experience is the feeling that I'm just not levelling fast enough. It's entirely in my mind, but there's definitely a sense of pressure there. My guild has their first Naxx raids tonight, and I'm quite disappointed to be as far "behind" as I am. Being a large guild there are always some that are ahead of the curve, but I'm feeling way behind the curve.

For a while now I've been focussing on Grulnak at the expense of my warrior, but from now that focus will mean that all other alts are totally on the back burner until I'm levelled and geared. I'm questing reasonably efficiently at the moment - or at least I assume so as it seems that I'm often handing in several quests at a time - while still paying some attention to the quests and absorbing at least a bit of the lore, but levelling is seeming really slow. At the current rate I'm doubting I'll ever have a second level 80, but if the next expansion is another 18+ months away then that view may well change.

It sounds like Naxx is reasonably undemanding in terms of gear compared to Karazhan, and Drugfreeyth's Shields Up! blog seems like a great resource to help me get geared up quickly. My goal now is to ensure that when my guild starts to move beyond Naxx I'm ready to go with them. Our raiding is inclusive enough that I'm not worried that I'll get excluded, but more that I want to be in the early waves to see the content and be in on some guild first kills not in the later stage when the raids are on farm and alts start to go through.

In other news I've now met my first nature immune mob, which in the Burning Crusade was my cue to switch to enhancement. The immunity situation seems less marked this time around, and for now I'll stick with elemental although with my resto-heavy spec it's not nearly as fun as it was at first. I'll see very shortly whether Lava Burst changes that at all. In the meantime I've started to stockpile enhancement quest rewards in case I do switch.

Elemental quest rewards are starting to be significantly better than my current gear in terms of Stamina and less so in Int, but still behind my gemmed and enchanted gear in terms of spell power and crit. My current gear's days are clearly numbered though.

One random thought I had in the Grizzly Hills is that the place doesn't look nearly cold enough. It's got a nice "alpine highland" look to it, but wouldn't it be great if now (in the northern hemisphere winter) it was all snowy, but perhaps in summer looked as it does now?

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