Spouse Aggro

The Princess will just have to wait. Her authority has been superseded by a higher power. In fact I wasn't able to play any of my Toons this weekend and all because of my wife and her attitude to World of Warcraft.

Fortunately that attitude is, to paraphrase Dan Savage, “Good, Giving and Game On”.

Yep, I talked her into it. She would even have played on the public holiday we had last Thursday but we couldn't get the account started. We live in Hong Kong so a) Blizzard thinks we're gold farmers and b) Billing support is only available in the middle of the night.

Anyway, a whole new phase begins. And a whole new collection of Noobservations.
(You've got plenty of cash, hon; the silver ones are worth 100 of the potato-y ones)

My wife plays very impetuously.
She took one look at the Undead and decided to play Human. She took one look at Priests and decided to be a Mage. I picked a Paladin so I could Tank and Heal as necessary.

It was great fun and really quite mad. The spouse aggro I picked up was mostly swarm of wolves, bears and “another bloody murlap” (sic) that trailed her across the landscape. Her mage could run much faster than I could and she wasn't particularly interested in going around things.

I also think she was a bit over-familiar with some of the quest givers...

It was good for me because it got me plugged in to the Alliance storylines and she says she enjoyed herself. When 'just another half-hour' turns into a whole hour you know something's going right. The ten day trial will get us through next weekend and then we'll see if she's hooked good and proper.

Also, if I can get her to sign up I get a free Zhevra.

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RP, My Princess

My recent adventures have drawn me into quite a meta kind of place. I got much more attached to my Druid now that he's in his 40s but I was still feeling like I was playing all 3 toons as one concerted campaign. My own little pseudo-guild against the World.

I've been passing materials back and forth, dabbling in the Auction House and getting really excited when I discovered that Grexel can disenchant the stuff that the others make. Engineering and leatherworking levels as usual but enchanting and cash to boot.


Also, I've reached the kind of levels where there are lots and lots of quests available all the time. This “Being a Princess isn't
all it's cracked up to be.”
—Diana Spencer
combined with my penchant for exploration has led me to an almost constant need for Quest Log management. I'll probably return to that subject in another post.
The point is that I was dealing with World of Warcraft in a very deliberate and pragmatic manner. This made me feel good because it felt a lot like the 'proper' theorycraft people who know their glyphs from their pots. (Apparently glyphs are the new pots. Your guess is as good as mine. Probably better)

Suspension of belief was at an all time low.

Then I found the Obelisk.
Rather than going to a village and kibbitzing the next quest line based on how many bag slots it would take up I stumbled upon an actual damsel in distress.
It's a story well told; I had already come across the stonehenge circles that need to be unlocked to release her. But it brought me back to the fantasy roleplaying side of it all.
How could I carry on gathering wool when there was an actual Princess trapped beneath the ground by malevolent giants?

I mean that would be heartless.

On the other hand my bags were really full and she'd clearly been down there for a long time already.

I headed back to Hammerfall to unload. Which included sending some stuff to Undabridge for engineering. And that reminded me that I was meaning to make a pair of Flying Tiger Goggles for Grexel. Except it turned out that I was short one light leather.

Hang in there, Princess. I'm coming as soon as I collect my mage training...

The punchline for all this was that Grexel couldn't even use the goggles without switching to engineering herself. Dammit.

Karmic debt. My way was clear.
I had to save the Princess.

After disenchanting the goggles, of course.

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Long Distance Noobing

After my previous experiment in not going anywhere and locking out easy kills I thought I'd go looking for some new territory. I read somewhere that Ghostlands was level 10-20 and not favouring either of the factions.
So I took my troll hunter (Undabridge, geddit?) and flew off to the Undercity.
Then he and his trusty scorpion, Gerald, headed East to run through the Plaguelands.
Figured it would be fine as long as they stayed on the path.
This, to cut a long story short, turned out not to be true.

To expand upon a short story for the purposes of audience schadenfreude the following happened:

1.Quick low level quest knocked on the way out of Tirisfal making me feel hardcore and confident.
2.Emptying bags and repairing armour at the border post.
3.Getting killed by spider things.
4.Repeating step 3
5.Corpse running and gaining ground by resurrecting as far to the East as possible.
6.Deciding that Gerald was safer dead than alive.
7.Desperately trying to use hunter tracking to avoid beasts.
8.Getting killed by undead humanoids.
9.Changing tracking to humanoids
10.Getting killed by beasts
11.Finding a village that surely must have a flightmaster so I can get some notional value out of this ridiculous expedition.
12.Getting killed by more humanoids.
15.Repeating steps 3, 8, 10, 12, 13 and 14

I actually made it to almost the far side of the Eastern Plague Lands. There's a city thing there, it seems. It was in the process of being contested by players 30 levels above me. This also did not go well. I also figured out that I had been running, in a panic, to the wrong border.
It was around this point that my RL tenacity buff ran out and I decided to hearthstone out of there.
Guards had respawned behind me but I only died three times getting that done.

Total profit:
Some expanded map view.
1 good screenshot
An emotional scar so deep and wide that the Plaguelands will one day afford me the greatest revenge satisfaction the world has ever known.

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Down on the Farm

This weekend felt like a really different experience to me.
Usually I get that feeling when I unlock some new part of the game that I wasn't expecting; new spells, different druid forms or even new areas.

This time, though, it felt like I'd changed.

“I wouldn't bet the farm on it.
I wouldn't even bet the outhouse on Moonvale”

—Richard M Naxxon Whenever I've heard people talk about farming, or even dailies, it has made me cringe. It sounds like un-game, non-play - WoW masquerading as work. It just sounds wrong to me. Consciously I know that I will be doing it merrily at some point in the future but viscerally? Yeesh.

Except I couldn't get the leather I wanted.
Some kind of weird discord between my skinning skill and my leatherworking means that all the beasties I was slaughtering in Stranglethorn were giving me heavy leather and thick hide and all that. Which is lovely for cash but wasn't giving me the light and medium stuff that I need to level the leather.

So I went farming.
I thought I was going to go back to my roots in Mulgore but then I though: My mage needs wool.
And my hunter needs some stuff for engineering.

I found myself playing across my alts as a group.

Paronymous the Druid was still the main actor by virtue of being most powerful (and therefore more efficient) I sent him off to Tarren Mill because he had a Yeti that needed questing as well.

Turned out the Yeti were the perfect leather source.
And the merry citizens of Hillsbrad were great for wool and cloth. It was sweet.

One of the ways that it was different was that I essentially wasn't getting any XP. Up until now that was the only thing that spelled progress to me.
But getting everybody up to 8 slot bags and dinging some of the profession benchmarks was just as satisfying.

And the good thing was that I managed to get some quests done at the same time.

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Suffer The Little Children

Okay, I know: Children's week was last week. I've just been having some real life issues culminating in a 5 day internet outage. It's like being back in the stone age. Who knew?

Anyway I loved Children's Week. It's the first event holiday I've participated in. Noblegarden just seemed too much like grind. And let's be clear I really only dabbled in Children's Week. I didn't get all the sweets and I certainly didn't head off into the battlegrounds for all that stuff - Apparently far less noobish players than I were making the warzone unpleasant for the regulars. No need for my sorry arses tripping over their keybindings.

It was a full family affair.
All three of my Toons did the circuit to tourist spots and passed the same packet of icecream around between each other by mail. This lead me to two main observations:
1 Those little orc kids can really run. They could keep up even when chasing me in cheetah form.
2.Druids confuse non-players. I found out that because I keep changing forms when my wife looks in she thought I also had a spell that turned me into an undead mage or a troll hunter.
I explained the difference.
It felt like a baby step towards convincing her to play, which would be epic.

I also must confess that I took the Curmudgeon's Payoff every time.
It didn't feel especially curmudgeonly and I expect it's different for people who've been in the game longer. Right about now Five Whole Gold really makes a difference.

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Millionth Word

Following my strident defense of the word Noob earlier in the week I was excited to find that it is now locked in a battle royale to become the 1,000,000th word to officially join the English language.

“Who is more Noobish?
The Noob?
Or the Noob who follows him?”
—Noobi Wan Kenoobi
Apparently a word becomes official if it gets used 250,000 times in the public domain. So I can't tell you what the other words competing for the coveted spot are because it would help their chances of getting recognized sooner. What I can tell you is: noob, noob, nooby mcNoob noob.

Actually, right now we are 544 words away from the top slot so it's more or less a lottery. If this was any more nailbiting I would explode.

(No pic today, sorry. Left my thumb-drive at home: What a noob!)

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Reclaiming Noob

Okay, listen up.
This is not being a noob.
Neither is this.

I don't care how stupid or embarrassed you felt on your 25 man raid; if you're at endgame and you can oneshot my main you aren't a noob.
Sorry, we don't have much but we do have standards.

Some of us are still wondering at what point we should upgrade from Vanilla WoW to Burning Crusade. I still don't have the foggiest idea how to leathercraft a Glyph.

And you know what? I love it!
“A gnome can be beheaded
but not defeated.”
—Hemmet Nessingwary

Everything's brand new.
I spent the weekend in Stranglethorn Vale and it went from being a scary jungle crawling with dangerous monsters to a juicy cornucopia of wandering XP. Nothing like it to make you feel like a Badass.

And then wallop!
I get cocky, wander down the wrong path and get my spleen handed too me by a frakkin murlock.

Which just goes to show there's plenty of game still to come.

I just need a Glyph of Spleen Replacement.

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