Archive for the “ding” Category

Because so far Althalor is batting a hundred for running into this guy anytime he so much as pokes his head into Sholazar Basin.

Oh, I hit 90, by the way!

I still can’t believe I did it on a character that has never been my “main”, but that’s love and Warcraft, I suppose.

The Klaxxi are the best faction because they are mantids who are alpha as smurf and talk about their young maturing under the beating of a million wings and whatnot. Also, the Tillers stuff is ridiculously fun. That’s really all I’ve had time to mess with thus far. I wonder what’s next in store?

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Feels good, man!

Now I need to figure out what to do next!

In other news, I did Vortex Pinnacle. Guess what? I got to TRAP. My only issue is that I’m still sort of trying to figure out Trap Launcher. I seem to I run into weird LOS issues when I least expect it, thus, I fail at it more than I figured I would. You see, I come from the old school of chain trapping and I’m used to, you know, pulling the mob to me. Which I actually had to do a few times when improvising in Vortex Pinnacle today, which sort of made me feel all warm and fuzzy all over. Still, “Figure out Trap Launcher” is at the top of my To Do List.

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WoWScrnShot_081309_091757

No? Two level 80 Beast Master hunters doesn’t make me an addict yet?

Don’t worry, I’m working on a third…

Edit: Got to admit, I dearly love my taurengirl. I love Tawyn, too, but she is a character whereas Lunapike is more, well… me. Honestly, if it weren’t for most of my friends being Ally-side, I’d seriously considering switching mains to Horde. Tauren for life.

Edited Edit: Don’t forget, I have a level 80 resto druid as well who I leveled as resto. So, I’m not *that* sheltered, right? I’ve branched out *hears groans in the audience* right?

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I still have a rather distinct memory of when I decided to roll Tamaryn, though the “whys” have since largely been lost to the mists of time. I do remember saying in guild chat something akin to “I’m bored, I think I’m gonna roll a druid”, then making one and whispering an officer and being chucked a guild invite within ten seconds of my new character’s existence. I also remember a fellow guildie coming and making a druid alongside me. We did the starter quests together and were soon joined by this random naked hunter who kept challenging us to duels (I always won, because I never let him have range. Class experience for great justice.) When me and my buddy couldn’t shake the guy, we went into the deepest part of this spider cave and got as lost as we could, then hearthed simultaneously, leaving him behind. Good times.

My friend stopped playing his druid once we hit level five or so, and to the best of my knowledge he never played the character again. I kept playing, though, largely because of the sheer nostalgia of playing through the night elf starting area for the first time since Tawyn, my first character.

Upon hitting level ten I put my first tentative points into the Balance tree because I figured I probably would not like melee as much as casting. Leveling was slow going, though, and honestly I probably would have lost interest in the character (as I did all my non-hunters) once I got out of the nostalgia kick that was Darkshore… were it not for that fateful day when a bunch of guildies got on alts all about my level and asked me to heal Deadmines and Shadowfang Keep.

I was very nervous; I had never healed before, ever, well, outside of Mend Pet. Because I was so worried about it, I ran to Darnassus, found the druid trainer, cleared all my talent points, and put them into the Restoration tree. My plan was to respec again and put them back into Balance afterwards.

That didn’t happen.

Because that day, in Deadmines and SFK, I became fascinated with healing. It was like reverse-huntering! It was a completely new experience, so very different than what I’d been doing all this time on my hunters, and I was hooked.

And so, with the exception of a few flirtations with Moonkin-ing (once at level 40, and then again permanently when dual specs came out when I was level 74 or so), I leveled my druid full resto. I RestoKitty’d through the occasional quest, which was slow but effective, but the vast bulk of my leveling was through instances; I kept myself constantly in LFG and shoved myself into as many healing roles as possible. This culminated in a rather unique experience to put on my WoW résumé: I healed almost every five-man instance in the game. At the appropriate level.

It’s been ups and downs, really, but mostly ups.

There was the very slow process of learning about the delicate art of not-healing-too-fast so as not to pull aggro.

The little “squee” I emitted upon running into a group of roleplayers in Southshore when I was leveling there and letting Tamaryn put her fledgling skills to use to aid a “dying” character.

The joy of getting Tree of Life form mid-Maraudon run and using it right there and immediately bursting into /dance.

The rush of winning a single Alterac Valley game (by a hair… literally something like two reinforcements) at level 60 after dozens of losses, and looking at the “healing done” chart afterward and feeling like I had made a tangible difference in the outcome.

There was the perplexity I felt when first learning Lifebloom, because it kept changing all the time– first I was never supposed to let it bloom, then I was, et cetera… not to mention I couldn’t figure out how to use the dang spell, so I quickly resorted to my “healing fetal position” of Rejuvenation + Regrowth.

But then there was the thrill of first hitting 1000 spell power, and soon after, the deep satisfaction of doing Azjol’Nerub and Violet Hold and pulling up the healing meters and realizing that Regrowth had pretty much been completely replaced by what else but that oh-so-stubborn spell Lifebloom– I was, at long last, a bona fide HoT healer.

Yeah, it’s been a pretty crazy ride.

WoW_Tamaryn_80

Not a single death in that HoL. Not one. And the DPS had never been there before and kept standing in crap. (Though to be fair, the tank was really good >.>)

…and yes Virginia, after all these years, Pike finally has an endgame character that isn’t a hunter.

NOW ONWARD TO EPICS!

TreeCheerYay

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attumenthehuntsman

moroes

maidenofvirtue

bigbadwolf

nightbane

curator

illhoof

shadeofaran

netherspite

chessevent

medivh1

prince

…I say that’s a big falsehood! =D

Five of us who had done Karazhan together “back in the day” got together and went in and it was… so much fun. Favorite raid instance, always and forevah. <3 We hope to do "alt runs" in the future, where we pull together some 80s and some 70ish alts and nab said alts some gear. That would make my druid happy because so much caster leather dropped today that it was silly. Speaking of which...

tamaryn70

/grin!

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After much hem’ing and haw’ing…

wow_lunapike71

Lunapike starts to work her way up the leveling ladder!

Now, I’m one of those psychos that actually really enjoys leveling. I love the quests and the lore and the world and seeing it all through the eyes of a character with a different personality than last time. Why do you think I have so many alts that are hunters and druids? Because my strain of altism is unique in that I enjoy the questing more than the “learning to play a completely new class” thing. For the most part I stick to what I know I’m already comfortable with and enjoy, and do more leveling. (And tame more pets, my other favorite part of the game).

Lunapike’s spec is a little interesting, so I’ll preemptively explain before anyone asks (cause I have been asked about spec discrepancies between my characters before)… her spec is meant firstly for making her pet more of a tank for more efficient leveling, and secondly for the fact that she’s on an RP-PvP server and may have to scuffle every once and a while. Those two types of specs seem to coincide quite well if you are a Beast Master hunter, just nab all the talents like Endurance Training, Thick Hide, and Spirit Bond. I’ll probably respec her at 80 but for now, this is what she is, and it works well.

I have no idea how fast or slow Lunapike’s journey to 80 is gonna be or whether she’ll even be my second 80 (Tamaryn is closing in fast in a surprise run from the outside! And down the stretch they come! Now taking bets!) but I’m gonna enjoy it. I was always disappointed that I got her to 70 a little too late last time and never even got her into Karazhan because WotLK came out before I could finish getting her geared up for it. I want to make sure that doesn’t happen this time; my taureness is at least gonna see Naxx, and hopefully a lot more too. Because I maintain my stance that tauren females* are the best playable models in the game and deserve to be seen in all that epic armor. *nods*

* Female tauren hunter is probably my favorite gender/race/class combination in all of WoW. I just love it. And it makes me really happy that there are a pretty decent number of us in the blog world!

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…and it feels so good.

(Apologies for the “There is nothing to attack” spam. I normally do not button spam, but I wanted to DPS and catch the screenshot, so. =P)

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Gather round, and I will tell you all a story… (I apologize for the length!)

Way back in May, when I was finishing up university, my boyfriend installed WoW.

…now there was absolutely no way I was going to let him do this without me, so the next day I installed it too.

A few hours later, there I was, looking at the character creation screen…

Me: “Ooooh, Tauren are so cute!! I must make one!!”

The Boyfriend: “Erm, I’m playing Alliance, so you’ll have to also if you want to play with me.”

Me: “Oh. Darn. Well let’s see here. Oooh, Night Elves. They had a pretty cool backstory in Warcraft III. Look, I can even make one with teal hair. My favorite color! *squee* Now for class. Hmm. Oooh, hunter. That sounds sorta like my favorite D&D class, ranger.”

*click*

And thus Tawyn was born.

I spawned as a little level one Night Elf Hunter in Teldrassil and I had no idea what was going on. I clicked on all the little tutorials that popped up, reading them carefully and trying not to forget what they said. “The little gold chalice button is the Quest Log.” “People with a big yellow exclamation point above their head have stuff for you to do.” “Right click to attack.” It was all very confusing. I couldn’t keep a lot of the aspects of this strange new game straight. I found a cute little bunny hopping around and I wanted to select it… so I right-clicked. It died. I felt horrible. The camera angle kept doing strange things, and I had no idea how to change it.

But oh, look, a guy with a big yellow exclamation point above his head! That means he has stuff for me to do, right? He’s telling me to go kill boars. Whee, I’ll go shoot them!

So I did. But then they ran towards me and I couldn’t shoot them anymore. So I whacked away furiously with my dagger, spamming the attack button because I thought that was how you did it. Then I went back triumphantly to get my very first quest reward. I chose some mail gear because it had the most armor so it was obviously the best one. Then I spent about ten minutes trying to figure out why I couldn’t equip it.

Those first few quests weren’t so bad, even though I was still clueless about the game. But around level 4 or so, I found a cave full of spiders and that was a terrible, terrible place. Those spiders killed me more times than I can count. There was another place called “Starbreeze Village” which was filled with cute teddy bears! They killed me too. Hmm.

So by level 6 I was getting pretty discouraged and I was wondering how the heck I was supposed to get to wherever my boyfriend the human warlock was because it didn’t seem to be anywhere in the vicinity. Plus, I’d found a Peacebloom which I wanted to give to him as a present because it was really pretty. So one of my sisters decided to make a level 1 character on my server and show me the way!

Off we went. We rode gryphons and boats and died at the hands of crocodiles and ogres. My sister kept stopping and telling me to talk to strange NPCs with green exclamation marks above their heads. I had no idea why I was doing this, but I did anyway.

Eventually we got to Ironforge and rode a curious little subway thing to Stormwind. I was completely lost but I followed my sister around because she seemed to know what she was doing. I eventually found my boyfriend and opened trade with him to give him my present. But…

Trial accounts cannot trade.

…there was only one thing to do. I bought the game. And gave him the Peacebloom.

So there I was, level 6 and in Stormwind. And– oooh, look that guy’s weapon is all fiery! Mental note to get that someday, whatever it is– I began questing in Goldshire. It wasn’t exactly a pleasant experience. Murlocs killed me mercilessly and despite the fact that I thought I was pretty handy with my dagger, spamming that attack button and all, I didn’t seem to be doing very well. I rolled my very first alt, a tauren (they’re cute darnit!) druid, and it was a lot more fun. You mean I can cast spells at people and heal? So much cooler than that silly hunter I’d made, pffft. But I kept playing my hunter because I wanted to play with the boyfriend.

Level 10 rolled around and I got this mysterious quest to go back to my hometown and get a pet. I about had a heart attack when I found out I had to go back to Teldrassil, as visions of those evil crocodiles and ogres flashed in my memory. I procrastinated on that quest for a while, because of that. But, eventually, I used my hearthstone (which I had never got around to changing yet) and went back there.

The quest involved me taming a spider, a cat, and an owl. The spider I still had a grudge against from that cave. The cat was cute but I saw cats all over Stormwind (all the hunters wanted them, for some strange reason), and I wanted to be unique. The owl made cute flappy-wing noises. I liked him.

After the quest I was informed that I could go tame a pet of my choosing to keep for as long as I wanted. I freaked out because I instinctively knew that this was a big decision and I didn’t want to screw it up. Frantically I went to my sisters for help, and they directed me to a website called Petopia. I spent about an hour there, cycling through all the pet choices, hardly understanding anything about “DPS” or “skills”. I was going purely on looks, how hard they would be to get (I wanted a raptor but they were in the Barrens, which I assumed was full of Hordies who wanted to kill me, so that was a no-go), and whether the site said they were “offensive”, “defensive”, or “well-rounded.”

I seriously considered a wolf but in the end I went with the owl. There was something endearing about having an owl flapping next to you. I went and tamed a Strigid Hunter and named him Tux.

Back to Stormwind I went, feeling a rush of relief when I managed to get back to Elwynn. I hadn’t liked it at first but it had really grown on me. Now I just had to adjust to life with a pet. I wasn’t exactly sure how it was supposed to work. Was I supposed to put him on aggressive and have him kill things for me? Hmm, nope, he died. OH MY GOSH IS HE GONE FOREVER?? *hyperventilates* Oh wait no, there’s a spell called Revive Pet. *deep breaths*

I know, I’ll shoot stuff and make it come to me and my pet and I can fight it together!

That’s what I did for a while.

…yes. I know.

I moved from Elywnn into Westfall and began questing there. At some point during this period I realized I could teach my owl “Growl”, and I also sort of gained an inkling of the idea of having him tank while I shot stuff. I could now use something called “Talent points”. I asked a couple people (non-hunters) what I should do with them and I was told to put them into the Marksmanship tree, so I did. Improved Concussive Shot, obviously, because a chance at stunning someone sounded about ten times more exciting than increased crit. I thought I was a pretty darn good hunter, despite the fact
that, ya know, I was dying all the time. Boldly I ventured into Deadmines with my pet on aggressive. This was a dungeon afterall. More damage was good, right? Having my pet on aggressive killing stuff was good, right?

The people at my party started yelling at me and telling me to control my pet. I didn’t get it. How was I supposed to control my pet? What did they mean?

At some point they told me trap a mob. I laid down an Immolation Trap and smugly pulled the mob in. I had an ice trap too but I didn’t like it. It didn’t do any damage. Pfft. What kinda lame trap is that, not doing any damage?

We killed VanCleef somehow. The people in my party weren’t very happy because apparently someone had ninja’d a lot of the loot throughout the dungeon. I got angry too. Darn those ninjas! Good thing I somehow got a lot of great stuff though. My bags were full of them. Silly people should know to click Need if they want stuff.

And so I continued my questing, fancying myself as a nice little hunter who’d had some bad luck. I still wasn’t a big fan of the class and I was rolling non-hunter alts all the time, but Tawyn was the highest level so she was the most interesting, so she got the most playtime.

One day I was attacking something and somehow aggro’d something else as well. It ran towards me, with Tux still busy on the first mob. Now I don’t know how or why this idea popped into my head, because it had never ever occurred to me before… but for some reason I hit my never-used Freezing Trap button.

Pop!

I had one mob trapped and out of my way while I took care of the other one. Then I went back and finished the trapped mob.

Afterwards, I blinked. Whoa.

…what a neat trick I’d just discovered! I tried it again. It worked, again. Wow! How fun!

I wondered if hunters had any other little tricks like that.

After I logged off WoW I hit up WoW Wiki and Google, searching for information and help on the hunter class. The first two sites I stumbled across were called The Hunter’s Mark and Big Red Kitty. The Hunter’s Mark had a bunch of stuff on trapping which I read voraciously. Big Red Kitty was filled with math and numbers and strange new phrases I had never heard of before, like “Steady Shot” and “Kill Command”. But it all seemed very important so I bookmarked it.

I hit my 30s and began questing in Desolace. I haven’t forgotten this: me, my boyfriend, and the guy who’d introduced us to WoW playing on an alt, all of us questing in Desolace. At some point we pulled a lot more mobs than we wanted to. And I, ever in love with my little trick, trapped a mob while we took out the others.

The friend said in party chat, “Great use of your traps Tawyn… you’ll make a great hunter.”

Wait… I would?

But everybody was always yelling at me! I was always dying! And yet… I really had the potential to be a good hunter? Great, even?

And that settled it.

I went back to BRK and read the entire thing. Everything. First I read the posts he had linked on his sidebar. Then I went back to his very first post and read the whole blog “cover-to-cover”. I read all the comments. Took a few days. I tried to internalize as much as I could. I didn’t understand a lot of it but I read it anyway. I went to The Hunter’s Mark, too, and read as much of it as I could and watched the movies that had been posted. Then I started clicking on links and on the names of the commenters. More blogs to read! I never said anything, I just lurked and read.

Somehow, between all that reading and learning and the playing and practicing, something clicked.

Suddenly I couldn’t play my non-hunter alts anymore. They were awkward. They didn’t have that special, unique quality that my hunter did. They weren’t me. I remember I rolled a troll warrior on some friends’ server with the express purpose of making her my “main alt.” I got to level 7 or 8 or so and had to stop, I just wasn’t having fun or enjoying myself at all. The next day I went back to that server and rolled a hunter. Today she’s my second-highest level character.

More leveling, more questing. More… erm… very interesting adventures as you can see from the above screenshot. And slowly I incorporated what I had been learning from various blogs into my gameplay. I was using my traps. I was teaching my pet the right skills. I had my pet under control. I was no longer a hindrance in groups, but a help. I stayed Marksman until level 50 because I was comfortable with it; but here is where the Grand Respec Phase came and I messed around with specs for a while before settling on, whaddaya know, 41/20/0. I hit 58 and Outlands. Things kept improving for me. I began topping charts in battlegrounds. I began topping charts in instances. People began specifically asking me to instance with them– apparently I’ve improved a little since Deadmines.

Most importantly, I discovered something that I could practice and take pride in. It might sound a little silly to a lot of people if I were to compare playing my class in World of Warcraft, to honing one’s skills in a sport or art form. But that’s sort of what it became to me. And it taught me that no matter how horrible you are at something– a little coaching and a little practice can work wonders.

And now…?

I am a hunter.

And as of today, I am level 70.

Thanks, WoW bloggers. I couldn’t have done it without you guys. (Well, I could have, but… it wouldn’t have been a pretty sight. /twitch) I can only hope that my own little site will be as helpful to some other inquisitive newbie someday.

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