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A round tuit

I’ve finally got things in order. Work schedule is mostly in order. Raid schedule is established. Gear path (mostly) complete. And blog back on track.

Now it’s time to work on alts and their professions.

For the past 2 days, I’ve been leveling my Paladin (Cosmopolitan) and to alleviate the pain of leveling, I picked up mining on him and have been leveling that up. I leveled mining once on my druid way back in the day when he was feral (Yes it was for the HP bonus and my JC) and swore I’d never do it again because the vanilla zones were just awful (aka: no flight). Now that has changed and vanilla was a breeze. I would have gotten to 450 last night, but I decided sleep was way more important.

I’ve also procured 2 leveling buddies for my Priest (Junius). I haven’t played this toon in ages, but I need to really relearn the class. If you click the link, you’ll see how much of a noob I was back in the day. Pure crit gems?!? Also, I decided to drop Tailoring on the priest for alchemy since he’s already an herbalist. Tailoring has nice benefits, but since the toon is my secondary alt, I doubt I’ll be doing any progression raiding, so I wasn’t concerned with embroideries for stat benefit. I just want to make my own potions/flasks since they are incredibly expensive it seems. Yay low population RP servers!

But yeah, those are my latest projects for non-raiding time. It’ll be nice to dust off the priest and level some useful professions. When I transfered off server, I only had about 30k and I could only take 20 with me, so (without intention to come back) I gave a very generous 10k Winter Veil gift to my very good tank friend Addiction. I’m making it all back though so yay gold-making professions!

What are you doing in your off time? Alts? Professions? Farming? Let me know!

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First of all, I must apologize to everyone who read and followed my blog while it was active.

I feel like I jumped into this endeavor with very high expectations and didn’t really plan things very well. I also fell behind in raiding and activity and I was afraid I could not catch/keep up. I had so many ideas and plans for things to do with the site, that in my search to get to point C, I got lost on the way to point B. So I am very sorry to you all! 😦

It’s taken a while and a lot more time than I would have liked, but I am back. This time things are gonna go a bit slower, my expectations are more realistic and my goals… more obtainable. My first goal is to hopefully get my budding fan base back. I feel so awful for just dropping things like I did, but I know this time around will be different.

New Year, New Guild. As you know, I was heading to a new server with a new guild on the enemy faction. This change was short-lived. It was a new environment, which is what I wanted but it was really just the same as my old one. I was not as fast getting to 85 and gearing up so I was a bit left behind when raiding started. I felt like such a failure that I cancelled my subscription and was just going to let myself fall off the face of the virtual world.

As you can see, I changed my mind. Long, boring, and unexciting story short, I am back on SWC, back on Horde side, and rediscovering the joys of druid healing. I am in a new guild now, it’s the server #2 Horde guild, Honorbound. There were some name issues, but it will be Niq again soon enough. I’ll update my armory link after this to reflect my current name and such.

I’ve only been back on the raiding scene for about a week now so not much to tell there. Oh, I did get a new robe from Magmaw on like my first Cataclysm raid experience. Awesome blossom!

The upcoming patch changes for resto druids look very interesting. First of all, Trolls and Worgen will finally get their epic flight forms. You can read all of the Patch 4.0.6 notes here. One of the changes I’m most looking forward to is the 16% increase to our mastery (Symbiosis). From what I’ve heard and experienced, our mastery wasn’t all that powerful to begin with. Not to mention kind of iffy in 25-mans, especially on Chimaeron. biggest problem is I cast Wild Growth and it will hit all but one person in my designated party rendering my mastery kind of useless. Hopefully with the reduced mana cost of Rejuv, I’ll be able to keep it up a little more often (Not 100% like in LK) on the people in my group. I’ve only seen the fight twice though (once 10 once 25) so maybe it’s just me not feeling the rhythm yet.

More to come as I go along. Oh and be sure to check out Katarnas’ blog at http://restoisepic.wordpress.com/ and give him a warm welcome to the community!

Sweat and blood

So I finally hit 85 yesterday evening after a 4-hour character bug which was solved by suicide (GM’s suggestion). What happened was, I was not loading anything that could be interfaced in anyway. NPCs, players, mailboxes, etc. so I couldn’t get any quests or anything for a while. This happened in the last 7 bars of 84…very angry Niq.

Anyway, things have been going well with my new guild. I am, now, Alliance side on the server Arygos in a guild called <We Know Girls>. I know, it sounds silly, but these guys are fun and know their stuff. 10-mans Start on Sunday for raiders, but I’m still an initiate so I might not be going unless they need more healers. Who knows?

The process of 80-85 was really challenging. I tried to do it all as resto at first, but could not kill fast enough. Then when I went boom, things would hit me really hard so I had to heal a lot. This died down as I got new gear and gained levels. I decided to start in Hyjal, but so did 3/4 of the server. I moved over to Vashj’ir, which was really fun after I got my seahorse since Aquatic form goes as fast (maybe faster when glyphed) as a 450% speed water mount AND insta-cast. Booyah!

My area flow went like this:

  • 80-82 Vashj’ir
  • 82-83.5 Deepholme
  • 83.5-84.75 Uldum (Favorite zone btw)
  • 84.75-85 Twilight Highlands.

I recently got geared enough to queue for heroics (average item level of 329) and have been running them with my guild mostly. I’ve got to say, it’s been a humbling experience. Healing is no longer at all easy.

It kind of feels like this is what happened to healers from 80-85:

  1. Mana pool about doubled.
  2. Mana costs quadrupled.
  3. Amount healed inched up a bit.

It’s really quite challenging trying to get your group healed and not run out of mana. I’m getting better at it, but I’m not quite there yet. Doing more heroics and getting better gear will certainly help with “Mana-gement” later on.

It’s been a long road and the journey isn’t even close to over. The guild is starting 10-mans soon for the raiders and, I’m sure, will soon lead to 25-mans. Right now, I’m still at initiate rank so I might not be raiding for another week or two, depends on the needs for Sunday night. I’ll be using the time, however, to get more gear and get more experience healing. Watching videos and reading strategies will probably consume a nice chunk of time next week. Eventually the epics will start rolling in and progress will be made.

Anyway, it’s been an exciting and sleepless last few days, but I wanted to get a quick post in before I crashed for the night. By crash I mean, eat a late dinner and catch up on my shows before it gets too late.

How has your Cataclysm experience been? Are the changes in mechanics challenging? Why or why not? What is your favorite new zone/quest? Share your thoughts, I’d love to hear them!

Midnight release, I chose you

Yes, I meant chose not choose.

Tonight is the night, in about 9 hours from now the Cataclysm servers will go live and the grind to 85 will begin. I am fully prepared!

Full tub of strong black silk coffee, a bucket, loudest alarm clock, and energy bars. I have the next 6 days off of work and have prepared my body for minimal amounts of sleep and nourishment for the next 5 days. Sunday is for sleeping. I jest, but I really am quite prepared to hit 85 as quickly as possible and jump right into raiding. It’s been about a month and a half now since I’ve raided and even longer since I’ve raided something challenging. Getting back into a progression state of mind is first and foremost on my agenda.

I am going to take a power nap before I head to the store for the midnight release. Hopefully the line is not too long. I will try to squeeze a quick post about my midnight release/out-of-box experience while the game downloads. Assuming, I don’t nerdgasm on the way home and die. (Note to self: Extra boxers for the ride…just in case.)

But yeah, off I go. I have my alarm set to wake me up in 6 hours to give me enough time to get all set for the next few days. See you all in Cataclysm!

What is the first thing you’ll be doing after you install the game? How do you plan to get to 85, dungeons, quests, both? Tell me about it!

Back…from outer space.

I just walked in to find you here with that sad look upon your (night elf) face. What? Yes, Niq has crossed over to the blue side and joined the alliance. Don’t worry my tauren and Troll brethren, my allegiance is and always will be to the Cenarion Circle above all.

To make a long bad story short, I wasn’t getting a very pleasant social experience from my last guild/server and needed a change. I threw up a “Resto druid lfg” post on the recruitment forums and applied to a few guilds that got back to me and found one on alliance side that I really like. Alas, here I am. Something you might not know, is I was only horde side for about 7 months. I actually also made Niq look exactly as he did when he was a Night elf before. Light red skin and dark blue hair with the semi-stern face.

I’ve only been on Alliance side for a day or two and it already feels so natural again, like I just took a long (7 month) nap and woke up to a very pretty new capital city….with Deathwing’s calling card on the front gate.

Anyway, my hiatus is over and it’s time to get The Grove back into motion. Today is really the last day I have to put time into my video intro for Cataclysm stuff and update my spec page. I’ll most likely include “my” projected 85 spec based on what I think is appropriate as well as insight into other talents and how they might be useful in different compositions/encounters/etc. So be looking for that, I’ll tweet it when that page is updated. I still have yet to find an HTML interactive version of a talent calculator so it’s going to just be a still image again.

Cataclysm is but a  day or so away. I work on Monday and have the rest of the week off to enjoy and level to 85 and then gear up for raiding. My new guild is really going to try and make the push to start 25s as soon as possible and I’m hoping to be there for the first raid of the expansion. I’ll try to get our first boss kills up on the site as well as on my WCM profile which you can find here. I only have a few early videos I did so my apologies for terrible things you might see.

So yeah, I have quite a few things to do today. I can’t wait until tomorrow night!!!

Have you made any guild/faction/server changes for Cataclysm? Did you miss me? Leave a comment below and let me know!

Hi Ate Us

Hey everyone, I got some pics up on the Pictures page of some new scenery in Kalimdor. Eastern Kingdoms to come soon as soon as I finish my tour of the area and sort through them all.

Some news. I’m going to be taking a short hiatus from the blog until Cataclysm to get things sorted out with my guild and the future of raiding. I’ll still be playing a bit so if you want to hop over to SWC and say hey! But yeah, I just need some time to get some things together for Cataclysm.

Anyway, I will be back in about a week to ride strong into Cataclysm with you all.

Ten more days!

I am renewed!

The past few days have been really bittersweet. Trying to enjoy the new features and not let a cold bring me down, fun times. Anyway, I got a lot of sleep today and I feel refreshed and ready to share my experiences with The Shattering.

The most exciting change to gameplay, for me, was the much-needed change to the resto talent tree. Malfurion’s Gift no longer requires you to spend 2 points in a dps talent, making it more easily accessed. Also, there has been a 5/10 second increased duration to ToL on the Natural Shapeshifter talent. Efflorescence is still recovering from its 6+ players healing nerf, but in time should work out just fine. I will be updating my Spec page to reflect these changes accordingly. I may also try to get in a projected spec for lvl 85 in there, but without experiencing lvl 85 content, I won’t know what works for me talent-wise.

I’ve only just begun to explore all of the new Azeroth, the places I did get to see were absolutely stunning though. Garrosh has brought culture into the New Orgrimmar with a slums for the new Goblins, a valley for the Trolls, and a Valley for the noble Tauren. Each little area has its own Bank, Inn, AH, and select class trainers, providing a little piece of home for these races. Blood Elves and the Forsaken did not get such treatment but are welcome in the city regardless.

I was very excited to see that Tanaris’ beachline has moved closer to Gadgetzan. No more running all the way out to Steamwheedle port for the good beach sand. Gadgetzan’s prime source of income, Noggenfogger Elixir, no longer has a quest requirement. It is sold freely by Marin Noggenfogger’s lovely wife, Sprinkle Noggenfogger. I am very happy about this change because now I can go get noggenfogger on all of my toons without having to do the quests all over again. Hurray!

New cooking and fishing dailies have opened up in Orgrimmar, and Stormwind I’m sure. These dailies are a bit different, upon completion you’re actually awarded skill ups in cooking/fishing. Some quests even give you 2 points, neato! They seem to keep in the bounds of Orgrimmar, unlike the Dalaran dailies that would send you to Borean Tundra for a certain fish, which is very convenient. A new cooking award has been implemented for players to buy the level 85 food recipes as well as a fishing lure. The award has a limit of 10 which isn’t too bad considering the amount of new recipes isn’t too extensive. It will still, however, take you a while to get them all if you so desire.

One of the first things I went and did were the pet quests. Four new pets were included, all of which are adorable and somewhat easy to obtain. Some more difficult than others such as the Singing Sunflower, which is obtainable via mini-game quest in Hillsbrad Foothills. The game, as you may already know, is based off the popular pop cap game Plants vs. Zombies (Peacebloom vs. Ghouls). Of the four new pets, I would say that Withers the most easily obtained, for Horde players. The other 2 pets introduced are Mr. Grubbs and Tiny Flamefly. All of them are just adorable.

I was very excited to see a Bilgewater Cartel champion reputation tabard. After the hotfix, allowing reputation from LK dungeons, some friends and I started to chain run random dungeons. The 10% reputation boost from the Spirit of Sharing holiday buff made our grind less time-consuming. With potty and re-buff breaks, we managed to knock out neutral-exalted in about 4.5 hours. It was a tough grind but totally worth if for the Goblin Trikes.

I’m still sorting though a few of my screenshots, but I have a few ready for share. It’s just some pictures of Orgrimmar in different locations. Enjoy.

This one, I just found amusing. So typical of a goblin to have one of these.

More pictures to come as soon as I shuffle through them all. They will be located on the pictures page. If you follow my twitter, the update will be on there, as well as in a post. The same with the updated Spec.

How were your first few days of The Shattering? What changes do you like/dislike most?