levelling post patch 4.3

i play mostly alliance, so i always do it this way:

AZEROTH 1-57
1-5 or higher: race starter zones, until i can get over to stormwind (mage port, guild summon, ride a boat).
then it’s elwynn, westfall, red ridge, duskwood in that sequence. when to move over to the next zone? when the quests go green. always do yellow quests but not higher level quests (too much effort sometimes). after that, the zones are a bit more random. so i go wherever the hero call board recommends, but sticking to the Eastern kingdoms. no fun crossing continent by boat.

first off, i prefer to level with BoA gear that gives xp, and run on rested xp, and to do LFG, questing/farming only to kill time while queuing. cos LFG got group xp bonus. esp if you level a tank or healer and cant do as much dmg until you get dual spec. and i prefer to DS only on hitting level cap (why, so that your 2 sets of action bars are properly configured). so my tank and healer toons usually do very little questing. which is ok for me since i have other alts that provide them the latest and greatest gear (ok, just better than average). if you dont have gear providers, quest more. the gear they reward you is for your level (if you do yellow and not green quests)

why LFG so much?
for getting city rep. buy all the 6 tabards (stormwind, ironforge, gnomeregan, darnassus, exodar, gilneas). and wear a tabard for the LFG runs. the order in which you level the rep depends on your race and where you buy your mount/riding skills. if you buy mount from vendor not of your race, you need exalted rep. the better your rep, the cheaper the mount/training. besides, getting all 6 citiy reps to exalted gives you the ambassador title!

until i have a mount at L20 (and the upgrade to 100% speed at L40), i would base my hearth at the center of my quest zone so that i wont have to run on foot too far. once i have a mount, questing and travel is just so much easier. as a result, i keep the hearth in stormwind. just easier to drop stuff off in the bank or mail stuff, repair gear, train class and profs and do dailies for cooking and fishing

on getting to L68, take the portal to blasted lands and run into outlands. when u queue LFG, you will still get azeroth dungeons until you are L69. still, xp is xp.

OUTLANDS 58-67
- hellfire (58-60)
dont forget to train flying at L60. the faster you can fly, the less ground mobs you aggro. but now you gotta beware of horde city guards that can shoot you down from a flying mount.
- zangarmarsh (61-64)
used to do the sporeggar quests for rep and underbog quests, but now with patch 4.3, quests are inside the instance. if nothing else, do it for cenarion expedition rep.
- nagrand (65-67)
nesingwary quests, and doing rep quests with kurenai and consortium (free crappy gems on getting to Friendly)

cos with LFG and maybe include farming, you wont have too much time to do questing. i usually find myself L65 after the coilfang reservoir dungeon runs (SP and UB). after that, i seem to drop a lot into the CoT dungeon, old hillsbrad (ewww. timed dungeon run, slow thrall mount). i prefer getting the auch dungeons cos if you got a good group, its a fast run

LFG BUG?
if you havent got all your alliance main city rep to exalted yet, you wont complete it while doing LFG in outlands dungeons. regardless what you wear, the outland rep given depends on which dungeon you are doing. eg. hellfire dungeons give honor hold rep.

on getting to L68, take the boat from stormwind to borean tundra. until L69, you will still get outlands dungeons when u queue for LFG

NORTHREND 68-80
on arriving at valiance keep, get your cold weather flying trained
- BT (68-70)
with patch 4.3 dont need to do coldarra quest chains anymore for the Nexus quests, but you can still do it cos its nice and compact
- HF (70-72)
fly all the way over to howling fjord and do the chain quests on scalawag point – it gives u 2 nifty blue trinkets.
after that you have a few options – dragonblight or grizzly hills, but in general, i find that i am already L75 after getting the 2 blue trinkets.
- ZD (73-76)
why not my fave farming zone, SB? cos i dont wanna start on the rep quests, which then makes one part or another of the factions enemies. then farming in that zone becomes a hassle or else is out of bounds. however, if i am levelling a non-farming toon, then SB questing is preferred (cos bored of ZD and also faction rep has nice pets – however, i dont do enuf faction daily quests to get the pets, lol.)
- Storm Peaks (77-78)
gotta do the chain for sons of hodir rep (super pain in the ass) which starts at K3

wearing CATA GEAR in NORTHREND
if you have mains or buy from AH, you can start to be equipped from L77 in cata gear. this makes u awesome in northrend (and top dps in LFG).

- Icecrown (79)
gotta do the chain for ebon blade. actually, no. just to kill time while you level to 80 and get out of northrend!

on getting to L80, say bye bye to old xpacs and into the new!

CATA 80-85
quest or LFG?

  • LFG nets you justice points, which can buy iLvl 378 gear when you hit level cap
  • quests (esp when you complete the end of chain) nets you level appropriate blue gear. and along the way, you get to swap out your old green (or even wrath epics) gear with new green gear! they also give you cata faction rep, which you can buy blue and epic (iLvl 359) gear from the respective factions! also, factions give head and shoulder enchants

do a combo: quest for rep you need for your enchants. and run LFG to accumulate JPs to buy your latest and greatest gear.

- Vashjr or Mt Hyjal (80-81)

- Deepholm (82)

this is compulsory for therazane rep. you may end up skipping Uldum to complete this rep.

- Uldum (83)

- TH (84)

this is compulsory for the new vendors that are opened up only after you have completed the set of starter quests

 

 

 

cooking progress is slow. patch 4.3 is awesome!

cooking L350 onwards

it’s all about northrend cooking. however, on firetree and jubeithos, all my toons are already into cata cooking. which means doing cooking dailies to get the chef awards needed to buy recipes to go from 450 up to 500. so only toons on khaz are doing northrend cooking. and i havent really started on that yet. no rush since the toons are currently 70+

regarding cata cooking, the first part is to get toons who are past northrend cooking (approx 425) to hit 450. that means cooking toughened flesh. the easiest way i’ve found is to go mt hyjal, and kill stags for meat. i usually bring a skinner toon so i get skins for LW too! once they get to 450, it’s coffee time! that should level to 460. then either the monstrous claw recipe or blood shrimp recipe will get them to 475. from 475 to 500, the easiest is blood shrimp again. cos the rest of the cooking recipes require fishing (not exactly my fave form of time wasting)

so in order to collect a whole ton of blood shrimp, i have decided to complete vashjr quests on all my L85 alts. it has 2 benefits – faction and guild reps.

patch 4.3

patch 4.3 is like wrath’s icc phase. now ppl get get L378 loot from the new COT dungeons, bypassing the need to accumulate gear the hard way thru H LFG runs. of course, the catch 22 situation is, in order to be able to queue for these higher level dungeons, the gear level requirement is also upped. so long as your item level is at least 353, you can queue for it. so anyone just fresh capped from questing won’t be able to get in, cos that is just 346. you will need to buy some JP gear (assuming you ran some random LFGs while levelling and accumulated some JPs) or craft or buy off AH.

the other cool thing is the random raid finder. i havent used it myself, since i dont care to raid. and i am busy with the secondary profs of my alts. trying to get them prepped for the next xpac in 2012.

one benefit for me is that now is a lot easier to level fishing! yup, the effort has been halved. in one hour, i can get a toon from 50+ fishing, up to 175. of course, as it goes up the scale, the fishing will take longer, but still, shorter than before patch 4.3 came out. still, fishing to me is like the 2nd last thing on earth/wow to do. the last thing is arch. i’m still waiting for wow to shorten that pain first /rofl

 correction on arch

Archaeology leveling speed was also increased, now granting 5-9 fragments per dig. The number of fragments required to solve an artifact has also been decreased slightly. The Archy addon that we previously reviewed has been updated for 4.3 as well!

jubei’thos alts heading into cata soon

well, persi is already L76. so once she hits 78, i’m gonna try and see if she can already head into cata zones and do quests there. since you need a lot of cata rep, starting on quests ASAP helps.

(update 16 May 2011: nope. cant do cata at L78. so gonna try L79 next)

(update 19 May 2011: nope. cant do cata at L79. u gotta be L80)

as usual, L200 items for L80s are kinda pointless, since the cata items are already way past L200 (L277). in fact, if you got L78 BoE cata gear, can already use once your toon hit L78.

grouchy grouse of the day: ambassador title

ambassador title stripped off greeni. cos only 5 exalted city reps. thanks to latest patch 4.1, now need ALL 6 reps. grrr. persi just hit 5 exalted city reps. so still need ONE MORE

patch 4.0.1 and hallow’s end

PATCH 4.0.1

after nights of downloading the humongous almost 5GB patch, i finally patched it on friday night. and then did the usual – update mods. even so, some mods are dead in the water (auctioneer, questhelper, ratingsbuster), and those that were patched were pretty patchy themselves. i had to download new versions every day or so.

next task. 24 x L80s to respec talent and glyphs, and then gem if needed and oso reforge armor/wpns. lucky my pal was free this week, so we did it together. he specced the toons he likes and i did the rest. glyph-wise, still need to do a lot more, but learning to play with a different set of spells is an eye-opener. for example, hunters now use focus, and i had to switch to steady shot a lot more to regen focus.

before i know it, halloween festival is on!

Hallow’s End

for me, it’s just 2 things. every hour, talk to the innkeep for the trick or treat. then run the Headless Horseman instance once a day, and hope for loot. sometimes, your bag is empty. that’s life.

for the L80s without epic rings, this is a good time to get the L200 rings which can be looted from the boss. i got the spellcaster ring for darksunder. so that’s a very good upgrade!

only problem is there is a known bug – mouseover the pumpkin shrine and u can become disconnected. if its the tank then its pretty much game over. so always get a dps to be the guinea pig. XD

patch 3.3.3 pros and cons for me

time to go and download updates for my mods

http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/patchnotes/

LFG: i like that they now have a shortcut for CoS, and some of the penalties for deserting or being vote kicked have changed for the better, i think. most importantly, players can no longer roll Need on Frozen Orbs in dungeons under Need Before Greed loot rules. Pass and Greed options will still be available.

DKs: wow. a lot of good stuff for DKs. Icy Touch more threat, Chains of Ice auto add Frost Fever, Will of the Necropolis no CD, Nerves of Cold Steel (Frost talent for tanking using dual wield) offhand dmg increase, etc

Mages: oso rocks! frostbolt dmg inc 5%, combustion now 2min CD like trinkets, empowered fire and TotW now applies to pyros too, etc

Rogues: im not writing anymore. they are going to be seriously OP!

lots of PvP changes but idc.

professions:
Frozo the Renowned has moved into the Dalaran Magus Commerce Exchange and will be trading your Frozen Orbs for various other trade goods.

Titansteel Bar: Creating this item no longer results in a cooldown.

The cooldown and location requirements have been removed from creating Moonshroud, Spellweave and Ebonweave.

Maintenance Tuesday – housekeeping time

tuesday is actually a day i look forward to, esp if there is regular server maintenance. then i have to do something else with my time. sure, i could play other games, but i figured this tuesday i had better do something about the mountain of stuff in my bedroom. it had been accumulating slowly but surely, cos i take things out of cupboard and then got too lazy to put it back – dvds, books, comics, magazines, snacks, newspapers. so i did some housekeeping. chucked out the old stuff, stuffed some of the things back into cupboards and in general tidied up the room. now it is just half a mountain of stuff. another couple more of maintenance tuesdays should do it.

and i even had time to watch a bit of korean drama – Glass Castle/City of Glass. the lead actress looks a bit like the young Michelle Pfieffer. story is about the families of 2 lovers who got married in spite of the diff in family background. guy is from rich and prominent society family, girl is from poor family. so a bit of cinderella, as well as the not so happy ever after bits. good show a lot of drama and also learn a bit of class/etiquette stuff and also family politics skills.

btw, patch 333 still not out yet. but the downloading of parts has begun.

patch and restart = pain

with the new LFG, bliz needs to revamp their server restart procedure. last night, tried to run 2 LFG with different results.

1st LFG with Pyroblast, after 1st boss of UB, 3 party members got the server restart 15-min warning msg. i was one of them. we continued to 2nd boss and onwards, thinking when restarted we would still be in the group. WRONG. after my realm restarted, i logged in, all by myself, in the middle of the UB instance. had to re-queue LFG for another run.

2nd LFG with Pyroblast, the party managed to clear to 2nd boss of MT, when heals got the 15-min warning msg ($#%#@$%$#^¬† Blizzard!). so we think, let’s rush to clear to end boss. so the dps DK decided to pull the mobs, cos the tank was kinda sluggish. it was ok initially, but towards the end boss, he pulled too much. the mana leeches combined with a nexus terror and a normal mob. wipe. dps puller left in a silent puff of smoke. heals got server restart and left. the rest stayed behind and waited for a new heals and dps to join up and complete the instance.

finally, a patch bug. logging in to different toons, i was surprised to find that the action bar icons were not refreshed for my rogue. i had hunter icons instead of rogue icons! i did a /reloadui to get my proper icons back. weird.

weekly server maintenance: or how low can blizzard go?

i really wonder if the server admins and developers in blizzard are certified or just happen to keep their jobs cos they were there first.

what was supposed to be a simple 8-11 maintenance period became a 1-hr more thing, then a 2-hr more thing. and then when you can finally log in, welcome to massive lag. lag so bad, when you mine a vein, it takes a minute to load the stuff into your inventory.

i took xense to H PoS. gave up after the 2nd boss. cos after a lag-related wipe, we couldnt even release to run back. had to wait a couple of minutes. then we couldnt get back in the instance. again, lag wait a couple of minutes. finally, we just gave it up.

patch 3.3 irritations – camera view

i had been tolerating the strange behaviour of the view when i run up or down ramps. the camera tilts back to horizontal so as to give me the ‘natural’ feel that i am upright running up or down a slope. however, i had been used to the unnatural view of the fixed position of the camera that i had forgotten what is natural!

the partial fix: interface -> camera -> camera following style -> never adjust camera

there isnt a good way to return to the good ole days. so you takes what you can gets.

patch 3.3 – LFG

tried it out after the patch came out. some good, some bad, some very very bad.

good:
1. now i can find groups to run for those low level instances like ST or BRD
2. instant port into the dungeon when the group is ready. and when you leave party at the end, you return to where you last were, similar to BGs.
there is a button positioned at the SW point on your mini map with the option to “Teleport to Dungeon”
3. there is a new L80 instance to run! however, there is a bug in the 3rd stage of the instance. after completing the hall of reflection quest stage, you cannot board the ship/boat

bad:
1. maxed out instances. and you pay the penalty of waiting another 15 min before you can get into queue for instance again.
2. disconnects. if you are disconnected (either wow kick you or your connection is bad), you wait 15 min again to join the LFG.
3. mages can port u back to your respective server’s main cities, but locks cannot use portal to summon u to instance. workaround: invite a member who is not in the dungeon to join, make him leader. as leader, he can then queue in LFG for the same instance you are all in, then he can have the option to teleport instead of having to run to the instance.

12 Dec note: most of the bugs have been fixed by wow.