WAR RvR and WoW PvE rockin’!

I’ve had a lot of playtime during the Thanksgiving break thus far and I’ve spent it between WAR and WoW.  It’s time for a bit of an update/adventure log of my experiences in these two very different games.

Warhammer Online Adventure Log: WAR is finally everywhere!

Happy Fun Guyz and my Shaman have been officially moved to Dark Crag.  Many members of HFG returned to play together on our new server over the past couple of days with hopes that it would reignite our excitement for the our Destruction characters.  Most of us abadoned our characters in the T4 range when we made the switch to Phoenix Throne Order.  While we still like those characters, and some of us still play them on occasion, we’ve always yearned for the opportunity to continue our Destruction roots.

Dark Crag is full of players!  The T4 RvR areas have all been populated very heavily with players.  This afternoon I was in Dragonwake trying to take back our keep when we recieved word that another zerg of Destruction was planning to push Kadrin Valley and flip it into Fortress contention.  To have the numbers we had RvRing in Dragonwake AND another group large enough to begin flipping another region like that was realy cool to hear.  We had a war going, for the first time, on two fronts.

An interesting observation is that scenarios seem to be popping very slowly on Dark Crag.  This is actually a good sign because of how populated the RvR areas have become.   A buddy of mine (Teleth) pointed out that it’s probably due to the low renown earned by players severel RR’s higher than those they kill.  This makes players more enclined to open RvR where they can get chunks of renown.

Unfortunately, HFG has still not received its transfer level/renown.  I’m quite frustrated by this and hope that after the CSR’s are back from their holiday they’ll see to it everything is worked out.  This is but a blemish on the overall positive experience on Dark Crag.  With the RvR changes coming soon things should really start to look up in WAR.  I’m anxious for RvR itemization changes to go in so that I can stop having to worry about this nagging feeling in the back of my mind to PvE to gear-up.

World of Warcraft Adventure Log: Atmosphere wins

Morkeen in Hellfire
Morkeen in Hellfire

I’m up to level 64 now in WoW and making my way through the content quite nicely.  My partner in crime (Bartlebe, aka Volkmaar) and I started our experience as newbie DK’s (lvl 55) and have worked our way so far through all of Hellfire Penninsula and almost all of Zangarmarsh.  We were around level 62.5 by the time we finished Hellfire and honestly weren’t at all sad to see it behind us.  The overall leveling experience there was very painless but the scenery did grow a bit old… and red… and old.  The questing there was extremely generous to us and we walked away with a few gear upgrades.

The opportunities for random PvP in WoW have also been exciting.  I’m constantly having to look behind me to check and see if someone, or group of someones, is trying to gank me.  There is tons of random fighting going on and the chance to mix in a bit of PvP while trying to level makes the entire experience just that much more exciting.

Amazing atmosphere in Zangarmarsh
Amazing atmosphere in Zangarmarsh

After Hellfire we moved on to Zangarmarsh where the atmosphere took a complete turn from dried up and red to wet, dark, and blue.  The marshy area of Zangarmarsh (I suppose it’s aptly named, eh) starts players out at the Cenarion refuge where Alliance and Horde actually quest together at the start.  This Cenarion area nicely establishes a bit of story for the region, talking about how the waters are receeding and the native wildlife of the area is responding to it.  For the Horde we have so far encountered the Trolls (zang’whatever) and their storyline of trying to establish a pressence in the area while fighting off the impending attacks from the Ogres and Naga.  Another race has also come into the mix – some spore-like people with a rather nasty habit of giving tedious quests.  Being able to progress so smoothly has allowed us to be a bit picky with who we quest for … these Spore people are on their own trying to collect all those dang mushrooms.

Overall, the questing has been, once again, very generous to us.  We’re not even completely done with the zone and already level 64.  Looking at the level ranges for the zones we’re comfortably staying in the top percentile for every region we hit which allows us to take on all the quests with relative ease.  Additionally, at this pace we’re looking at being able to hit Northrend without having to see all of Outland.  We decided that we’re still going to look at all the zones even if we don’t have to quest in them though.  The reason for this is because of the atmosphere.

I’m constantly stopping and staring at the scenery just taking in the amazing artwork and effort that went into creating the newer things I’ve seen in the game.  Blizzard knows how to really bring the world to the player on a truly epic scale through their art direction.  Apparently the WotLK stuff puts this BC stuff to shame.  I can’t wait to explore it all.

Hopefully by the end of Thanksgiving break I’ll be moving my way into Northrend and experiencing a city siege in WAR!

  • I’m glad you’re enjoying things, Keen. Again, I’d highly suggest cherry picking quest so you get a chance to see all the zones. Just do the most efficient quests in a zone and move on. Netherstorm and Shadowmoon are great and it would be a shame if you missed them.

    PS: Skip Blade’s Edge Mountains. The place is terrible.

  • CoW went to badlands, got to participate in a huge fight in T4 tonight in Reikland Fortress. Looks like the server crashed though. Must have been several hundred on each side.

  • We just decided to skip Terokkar forest and move directly to Nagrand. Is this a mistake or a good idea? We hit level 64.5 in Zangarmarsh before moving to Nagrand and when looking at the level range of Terokkar we would have spent half a level before being the highest level of the quests. It seemed like it would have been mediocre exp at best.

    Anyone think I should go back to Terokkar or do any specific quests as a DK there? If not I’ll just continue going through Nagrand and then move on to Shadowmoon and Netherstorm.

  • Hmmm I should look you guys up. Friend of mine (Znakki/Zharxis) said he joined up with you guys on Phoenix throne, but haven’t had a chance to talk to him for a while. Working on getting a WP up there I can finally play with him again.

    But I haven’t been on much on my Marauder on Dark Crag either. There was an attempt to get into Altdorf a few nights ago but it failed pretty hard. That was the last I’ve played on it. Maybe I should look you guys up so I can get some RvR in =p. PvE questing on my 32 is killing me.

  • Terokkar isnt a great zone, its a bit bland questwise and you really feel dissapointed in how the Arrakoa story never fleshes out (if you care about lore at all anyways), Nagrand is STV 2.0, lots and lots and lots of killtastic quests, but I liked the zone, its admittedly better as horde than alliance though (ive gotten to 70 as both).

    TBC’s questing is good the first time through, the only issue is the raid content/instance content which was terribly botched (and lore if your into that), and yes WOTLK’s atmosphere and story lines are far far better than TBC’s, although they did run into the same pitfalls instance wise, I wont go into detail since its your first time through the content none of these issues will matter to you in the slightest.

    <— Arthas server, Alliance

  • I personally really love Terokkar, but the majority of people I have talked to don’t. So I can’t, in good conscience recommend it since I guess I am just weird. But it is consistently my favorite zone. I enjoy doing the quests there and it is one of the few zones I have completed entirely multiple times.

    Nagrand is, on the other hand, generally listed as the “best” or at least peoples favorite zone in Outlands. And I found it meh. Admittedly, that is because I play alliance. The alliance quests through the zone just don’t compare to the horde ones. The horde have a VERY solid storyline, a great city, and more interesting quests overall than the alliance.

    And also it should be noted that doing green quests is probably the fastest way to level up. Unlike some other MMOs, quests don’t really have a steep drop off for out leveling them. It’s a very gradual slope down and they end up being easier so usually get done faster. Your choice though.

  • dont worry keen, you will hit 70 after doing nagrand/bladeedge area and you wont have to touch shadowmmoonvale and netherstorm. better do northrend instead those 2 area lol

    it seem your blog are the only one still posting positive stuff about WAR, even tobold’s blog is already filled with WAR doom and gloom post.

    i dont know, seem a lot of blogger is dissing WAR and praising WOW lately.

  • Personally, I like the visual looks of the forest part of Terokkar better than anything else in TBC. That aside, Nagrand is a good choice in terms of dense, well-designed quest hubs that will help you tick off levels faster.

    Also, cherry picking aside, you should be aware that the current exp curve will have you at level 68 and ready for Northrend long before you clear out Outland. In beta (I don’t think they changed 58-68 exp since then), my DK did all of Hellfire, Zangarmarsh, Terokkar, and Blade’s Edge, and this was enough to get me to level 68 without setting foot in any of Nagrand, Netherstorm, or Shadowmoon.

    You can stay put to visit the rest of those areas if you want to, but the Northrend stuff is a bit better, offers much better loot (no matter what, go do the first few quests in either Borean Tundra or Howling Fjord, because it’ll give you a massive weapon upgrade), and Northrend at 68 is one of the few places in WoW where a group is actually semi-helpful for outdoor quest content.

  • @Keen: If you like lore, I highly recommend doing ALL the quests in Nagrand which will kick off a special Horde-only quest chain centered around Thrall. It requires some group quests and a dungeon run though, so it depends on how much patience you have for LFG.

  • > Apparently the WotLK stuff puts this BC stuff to shame.

    I don’t know about that. I know many people didn’t like the “space” theme of BC, but I still think Nagrand with its floating islands forever dripping waterfalls is one of the best looking zones I have seen. That said, I agree WotLK zones are pretty incredible (what I’ve seen so far :)).

  • Err actually I spoke too soon, 3 of the zones I’ve seen so far are pretty amazing, but Zul’Drak just… sucks. Butt ugly. Seriously, got to question what the designers were thinking of. Well, I guess you can’t win em all 🙂

  • yeah WotLK are so much better then anything before, zul’drak is not as hmm pretty as the other new zones but its still cool.

    as for BC 2 zones i will never do again now you dont have to do them all are zang hate that zone and the quests there, the other is blades edge, blades is ok if you have the flying mount, but you dont get that till 70 anyway i would just skip it now theres no need to do it.

    with my DK i did hellfire > terokkar > nagrand > netherstorm, hit 68 before i did all netherstorm.

  • Would you guys suggest doing Northrend at 68 or 70? We’re level 66 now and moving on to Shadowmoon (or netherstorm, we can’t decide). We could potentially hit it tonight if we pushed ourselves or tomorrow for sure.

  • My DK just hit level 80. I personally went to Northrend at level 68 and don’t regret it at all, though there are arguments for staying til 70 in outlands. Particularly if you haven’t done it before, there are still plenty of cool quests (Particularly in Netherstorm. Shadowmoon has a lot of group quests. Then again, DKs ARE powerful)

    Even going to northrend at 68 I haven’t done a single quest in Grizzly Hills or Stormpeaks and am only halfway done with Icecrown. That’s 2 and a half zones completely untouched out of 8 for 12 levels. Northrend is just such a great place.

  • Personally, I would hit Northrend at 68. You can start gaining rep with the viable factions earlier, whereas rep with any Outland factions are not as important imho.

  • I actually started on Northrend with my Death Knight at level 66, and wasn’t close to die in Borean Thundra at all!

    Reason for me jumping straight to Northrend is because the Northrend graphics, environment and quests are just so great compared with Outland which I got bored of after the first few days of TBC!

    You will have no problem in Borean Thundra at level 66, only downside is that a few quests can’t be started before level 67 (or is it 68?). You can even clear Nexus with a group of level 68’s with ease.

  • Okay, cool. We’ll go to Northrend at level 68 then.

    Should we go to Netherstorm then instead of Shadowmoon Valley?

    Also, I would like advice on Northrend factions. Which are worth taking and all that info would be really useful.

  • Well, we ran to Shadowmoon and discovered we can’t get any quests until 67. So we’re going to stop off in blades edge for one level then his netherstorm.

  • Psh. I think both Shadowmoon and Netherstorm are great (of course netherstorm is better). In my opinion, you should do as much Netherstorm as you can stand and then go to Shadowmoon (even if you are level 68 already), just to get a feel for it. Maybe then you’d hit 69 or 70 and it’d just give you more of a boost for leveling in Northrend.

  • Ya just wait till you get to northrend, total puts outland to shame in more than 1 way. (MAJOR SPOILER!) I just put off 8 bars in icecrown(in 2 hours!) for lvl 79-80, and i came across the most amazing quest ever. Ok so what happens is about 34635634563456356 undead attack a camp and you get to get up on a turret and well… its a turret what else would you do when there’s millions of undead running around, KILL!!!! its so much fun to just rocket the crap outta them, and then dragons fly in and you have to hit them while they fly around u trying to kill you. Ya that was total epic.
    + the story line in WOTLK is so much better than outland, outland(in my opinion)was made every poorly. Northrend brings WoW back to total awesome(and the new open pvp zoon is epic and amazingly fun)

  • There are two different ways to level in Northrend, ide suggest starting in Howling Fjord. In my opinion it’s far more beautiful.

  • @Keen, regarding your factions question, most gear can only be used from level 78 (there are a few pieces that require 76) and higher so you have time to worry about it. I suggest going over the list at http://www.wowwiki.com/Faction#Wrath_of_the_Lich_King and just going over the factions. Some will be easy to level reputation with, thanks to an abundance of quests or dailies. Some will be harder. For example my 76 alliance priest is already revered with Valiance Expedition, and I assume the Warsong Offensive should be as easy to gain rep with thanks to the many quests available (including daily PvP quests).

    GL in Northrend 🙂

  • Its good to hear your War buzz is back. Its amazing what a server change and heavy tier 4 population can do. I will be intrigued to see what the 1.1 warhammer changes do, if you are happy at the momment, you may well explode when they arrive 😉

  • This is rather funny. Doing the very old and super-simplified content again with DKs deserves harsher words than “growing old rather quickly”. You will like WOTLK. It is just like Guild Wars “Eye of the North” expansion: Awesome to behold, stunning.

    But the trend is to make the game so simple… PvE became boring as hell, and PvP does not give me the kicks either.

    Guild Wars picked up this formula earlier, and WOTLK seems to copy it: The game becomes easier and more “accessible” than ever. Plus you get an achievement for basically existing or hopping around on one leg. This was boring me to hell in GW, and it did the same in WoW.

    I quit today. 🙁
    I wonder how long it will take you and Bartlebe after the first excitement to see that you can do every dungeon and every heroic and even Naxxramas without gear upgrades if you already had T5/Badge loot. 🙁

  • P.S.: Get a Tundra Traveller’s Mammoth or ask someone to jump with you in the chasm before Ulduar, this is a truly epic way to enjoy the scenery (do not worry, you cannot die if you are mounted on the mammoth).

  • @Keen,

    I’m glad to hear you and your Destro guild were able to xfer to a server with more action.

    Avelorn players recently xferred to PT, and the RVR has been nuts in T4 🙂

    Take care,

  • You’re going to fall in love with Northrend Keen. You seem to be a huge lore buff like I do for Warcraft(And not that Dranei shit). Outlands felt like this strange aside once I stepped into Northrend. I’ve had a few chained quests out here(Including a really awesome dungeon one) that were direct devolpements on the storyline. I’m actually doing the same thing you are, WOW for PvE, WAR for PvP. I missed tanking as a Warrior, what can I say? You need to tell me your thoughts on how DKs play, I have one at 58 from the starting DK zone, but after I did the little storyline, I was done with him(Oh yeah, some of those people you met during it come back later on in Northrend.)