Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Sssh!

Well I'm posting from my laptop since I got a BSoD after trying to patch my pc to Windows Service Pack 3. Spent all day yesterday trying to fix it, but it now looks like a reinstall job. Don't know why Microsoft would allow their own patch to destroy their own system but hey, it gives me a chance for a new post while I find my copy of Windows.

So anyway, I tried the shoulder enchant on my BoA item with some Arcane Tomes and it doesn't work! Well... because it doesn't meet the level requirement. Oh well, at least I know now. My advice: Only enchant your gear with those enchants that don't need a level requirement to use.

Weapon Buffs

Blizz has stated that they wouldn't allow weapon buffs on weapons for high level weapons to reduce the cost of raiding. That seems fair enough, and I know I've been trying to burn up all my Wizard Oils before my Moonkin hits 80 (its tragically slow, I just can't seem to do the grind to 80... again).

I do like to squeeze the most out of my paladin though, and just when I finally get to use weapon buffs for the pally in raids, it gets taken away. Well... not quite.

For some reason, the adamantite weightstone still works with my Titansteel Destroyer! I don't know whether its the weightstone that can be applied to all maces, or whether its just the Titansteel Destroyer thats the only one that the weightstone can be applied to. I have also tried putting on Wizard Oil on the TD, but it doesn't work. Unfortunately, I don't have a different mace to try weightstones on but if anyone out there can try it, please let me know!

I highly doubt anyone at Blizz would read this blog, so until they figure this one out, lets keep this buff on the down low. ;)


Friday, 26 December 2008

Post Christmas.....

Okay, its 2.54 in the morning on Boxing Day and I can't sleep. As I'm in a hazy insomniac mode this will be pretty much a non-wow related rambling so feel free to stop reading at this point. Boxing Day will be a lazy day, I'm just looking forward to just relaxing and watching the cricket on tv and hope that Australia can level the series against South Africa. Well Maybe I'll multitask and mindlessly quest or something while the cricket is on.

Looking back at my Christmas loot, I find that some of the best presents actually come from your siblings as they usually know you the best. I have three brothers. My youngest bro (78 BM Hunter 'Ghetts') tends to give challenging presents. Last year it was a massive inflatable yellow duck (I can't remember what it actually does, but whatever its doing its doing now). This year, it was a swear jar! I didn't think thought I swore that much, but actually yes, I'm sure I could fill it pretty quick.

My other younger bro (80 Assasination Rogue 'Torps') gave me a much needed wallet to replace my old one (which is pretty tattered now after seven years of wear and tear). The reason I hadn't replaced my wallet prior was that it must have a coin pouch secured by a button. Yes this is an anally specific requirement and come to think of it, kinda neurotic. So I can only imagine how infuriating it must have been for him to try and find it. If I ever lose my wallet, I'm screwed trying to find a replacement.

The oldest bro (plays AoC instead of WoW), gave me a gaming mousepad with a Wotlk motif. I'm still kinda attached to my current mousepad (also given by him as a present), which is an Icemat mousepad. This sucker is actually made out of blackened glass, and has been a gamers dream. I don't think they make these anymore though which is a real shame.

Hmm... oh yeah.

Iron Boot Flask

I stopped by Frosthold in Storm Peaks to pick up my Iron Boot Flask, for a measly 10 relics. The fact that it gives you 10 sweet minutes of an Iron Dwarf skin is well worth it. I’ve always thought Dwarves were cool, and I kinda regret not making Rexkicker a dwarf pally from the start.

Looking it up on Wowhead, it seems that the buff from it also gives you a chance to proc additional damage. It might not be much but still, damage is damage and it would be interesting what the Recount log comes back with. The price of this item is going up to a whopping 250 relics in the 3.0.8 patch! Talk about a price hike, I’m glad I bought it now.

BoA Shoulders

I shelled out 60 badges for some BoA shoulders specifically for the 10% xp monster bonus. I slapped em on my druid for levelling, and I gotta admit at least psychologically, it feels faster. I noticed that after I downed the last boss of Utgarde Keep, I received about 12k xp rested. That’s about a 1k+ xp bonus from a boss kill!

Not sure if I can get them enchanted but if so, I’ll shell out for the BC version. My gut feeling is that the enchant won’t work until the toon meets the minimum level requirement anyway so getting the Wotlk version is useless for levelling.

If you armory my moonkin you may notice that I bought the cloth version. This is deliberate seeing as I still have a Mage and Shaman to level, so by making it cloth, it provides the maximum flexibility to hand it down to future casters.


Thursday, 25 December 2008

Ho ho ho!


Merry Christmas everyone!

So I finished the Winter Veil meta achievement! It all started a few days ago with a little hat that dropped in Heroic Nexus off the first boss. Everyone in my party rolled need and as luck would have it, I won the roll and just walked around Dalaran with it on. Later, someone in guild chat mentioned that they were farming Nexus (non heroic) for the very same hat for the Merrymaker title. It was only then that I realised that I had something worth hanging onto and decided to look up what else I needed for this title (hoping it wouldn’t be as insane as ‘The Hallowed’ requirements).

In fact from what I could see, it seemed quite easy to do the rest of the achievements and I actually had the hard part done! So I ended up smashing through my Merrymaker achievements and today opened my presents to finish off the last one... ‘Crashin & Thrashin’.

Quick note, the ‘Winter Veil Gourmet’ achievement relies on having 325 cooking (to make the Hot Apple Cider). So if you haven’t raised your cooking skill… well unfortunately that’s too bad.
For the ‘With a Little Helper from My Friends’ achievement, I waited as long as possible before I picked up the buff and joined a Wintergrasp raid. The key here is survival not damage and so I strapped on my tanking gear, and either hung out in a vehicle, or just camped at the back away from the action. Since you’re still in a raid, you just keep racking up those HK’s! Chicken I may well be, but a chicken with the achievement done!

On Heroic Oculus

On a separate note, I freaking hate Heroic Oculus with a passion! Yesterday it was the heroic daily, and I really didn’t want to go in there but the lure of two more badges proved irresistible. The first time I tried this on Heroic, for the last boss I had a setup of 1 red (tank), 3 bronze (dps) and 1 green dragon (healer). We wiped constantly, and just called it. A few weeks later I tried a combo of 1 red, 2 bronze and 2 green, and although we came close, we again wiped over and over. That wasn’t fun either.

This time around it was a different story. We decided to use a setup of 2 red, 1 bronze and 2 green. One red to tank the adds while the other tanked the boss. This setup made it easy mode! So yes, finally Heroic Oculus is done, and I definitely won’t be going to that stupid instance any time soon.

Friday, 19 December 2008

Rep grinds

It was a plan of mine that once I hit level 80, I would solo some Outland instances to get any rep I was short of for my achievements. Fortunately the only major faction I’m not exalted with is Lower City. So I decided to run shadow labs last night as I’m only about 3k rep short.

I don’t understand the rationale behind this one, but I was only getting a pathetic 3 rep per kill on trash, down from the usual 15-20 rep or so. I was running with my mates DK and at level 77, he was picking up the full rep. I’m thinking that this is because the mobs were grey to me. Still, it doesn’t explain why the rep should diminish as you level. In fact, you should get more rep! Doesn’t it makes sense that a faction would view you as a greater hero if you can finish something without assistance, than if you needed to take along four others to do the same task?

I’m finding the same thing while I’m working on my Argent Dawn rep, although at least with the Argent Dawn if you have the trinket you can get the scourgestones so it makes up for it.

So what gives Blizz? You’ve got this tracking system in place for reps and achievements and yet if you try and go back to work on your missing rep you get penalised. Just more irritating that anything else really.

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Sigh arena

Okay, I’ll admit I was wrong yesterday. Yes you can do Instructor without priests and use Hunters with distracting shot instead. Sounds a bit extreme, but I’m willing to accept that.

Anyway, lets keep rolling.

With Christmas just round the corner the guild will take a break from 25 man raiding, although I’m sure we’ll pull together the odd 10 man Naxx run. Its pretty convenient that Season 5 starts today, so you can pvp away if you’re bored.

Personally though, I couldn’t give a toss about Arena. I could barely stand it in BC but at least you knew that even if you lost, you were working towards something no matter how badly you were going. In Wotlk, there is none of that, and your pieces start at 1695 rating for the legs. Sigh, no rating… no gear! Yes you can get the Savage gear, but after getting seasons of quality welfare gear it just seems lame to want to grind bg’s for blues. So instead I’ve been hitting up Vault of Archoren hoping my gear drops, and I’ve been fortunate and scored my legs.

Priests and Naxx

It’s a good time to be a priest, at the moment, you can be terribly geared and still get a spot in Naxx 25’s just because you happen to be the right class. Last night we were raiding Naxx and came up against Instructor. The difference from the 10 men version being that there is no Orbs so you need two priests to do the mind control. Fortunately we had two priests in the raid just by chance.

This is similar to Widow, you need a priest specifically to do the mind control on the adds and trigger their ability as downing them won’t stop her enrage like it does in the 10 men.

I’m a little puzzled as to why a MC mechanic exists in raiding at the moment, and seems to be counter to the Blizzard new raid design of bringing the player and not the class. It should have been that you grab your best three tanks, seven healers and fifteen dps. However needing MC means if you’re short of a priest (or two), you need to take a priest in greens or even grab a pug to do the content! So having to bench a quality dps or healer just to bring in priests for Instructor just doesn’t seem like the way forward.

The easy answer is ‘just recruit more priests’. This I believe is not the answer as it addresses the symptom and not the problem. The solution is not to remove the MC mechanic either, but to make MC available to another class.

Thursday, 27 November 2008


There’s one mount that I really wanted and yes I caved and bought a mammoth! This mount of awesomeness is the most fun I’ve had in awhile, and got me away from some of the more serious parts of raiding. I was giving free Mammoth rides around Dalaran and discovered something interesting when I decided to jump out of the Dalaran sewer outlet pipe into a huge freefall. I was waiting for the traditional splat… but we lived (yes I could have bubbled, but it was more fun this way)!

How did we survive? Well, the mammoth is actually a vehicle with about 5k health, so the mammoth took the fall while the passengers got off clean. Yay!
There are two vendors that come with it - one a reagent and repair vendor and the other a food and drink vendor. The prices are more expensive than if you bought goods off a vendor with whom you are exalted with. Still if you’re in a hurry it’s ultra convenient. Also I don’t have to carry vendor trash in my bags anymore, I just mount up and dump it (this was a fair problem while I was levelling). The main advantage would be for raiding though. Those raiders that forget to repair or restock reagents would instead just get me to go outside the instance and summon the mammoth.

Oh yeah and the price? Well you get over that… eventually.

Friday, 21 November 2008

Ding!

So I dinged 80 last night, and I'm stoked that the grind is over for Rexkicker!

I fully enjoyed the ride, and the game had much more variety, the Murloc suit quest is one of my favorites. Two things are a vast improvement gameplay wise. First it definitely has a progression element in the game. The change of the storyline as you do because of the phase shifting technology means your quests actually change the storyline!

The second is the sheer variety, allowing you to control different mounts and vehicles gives it that GTA feel.

What's annoying me the most though are those quests that keep getting you to take down flying mobs. Flying mobs people! Extremely irritating for paladins without a range pulling mechanism. I was doing some things like mounting up and doing a running jump and using HoJ or a Judgement in mid-air to pull. Come on surely you can give us something Blizz even if it doesn't do any damage (something like the shaman's windshock would be nice)! I was actually annoyed that I didn't get the Monster Slayer's Kit during the Scourge event!

Friday, 14 November 2008

Wrath is here!

So while parking my car on my way to pick up a copy of Wrath, I walked passed this obvious gamer car. This 4WD was PACKED with enough coke, coke zero and pepsi to burn through your insides! Either that or this guy has a lot of drainpipes to clean...

I've gone for a slightly more saner route, choosing the traditional pizza and beer. A perfect combo!
Yes I joined the queue along with heaps of other bleary eyed players, and I was one of the last ones to pick up my copy. I'm in no hurry though, after all I do have four 70's to level.

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Mana issues part 2

Following on from my post yesterday, I was thinking about how I used to manage my mana pool back in 2.4.3 and earlier. I know Wotlk is almost here and we’ll get access to the new spanking ability Divine Plea at 71! But will that be enough I wonder? Hmmm….

So what are our other options to regenerate mana? Well first lets look at those buffs and consumables you can control (not including shadow priests, other retadins, survival hunters and shaman totems). Note that as these buffs will be outdated, I'll have to look for the Wotlk equivalents in a future post.

Blessing of wisdom: I prioritise might over wisdom, but if there are several pallies in the raid, I'm sure you'll get it.

Mana potion: This is the easiest solution for instant mana, however in the world of 3.0.3, you can only drink one potion per boss fight and I want to save that cooldown for a haste potion+avenging wrath combo.

Mp5 gems: No, simply no. Paladins gem for strength, gemming for Mp5 gimps your dps.

Mp5 food: To be honest, I haven’t explored the benefits of eating Mp5 food, usually eating Roasted Clethoof for the extra strength. Going forward, maybe I'll switch to a hit rating food since we don't have the Precision talent anymore.

Elixir of Major Mageblood: I love this elixir as it gives us 16 Mp5. Since it’s a guardian elixir it nicely complements battle elixirs such as the Fel Strength elixir. Pity I can’t drink it if I already have Flask of Relentless Assault.

Superior Mana Oil: Hmm 14 Mp5. This is an interesting one to consider with the new mechanics to Windfury, as Windfury is no longer a weapon buff. I'll probably experiment with this while levelling with this on my weapon to see if it helps.

These are all pretty straightforward to help your mana issues, however there are more creative ways to try and increase your mana regen, and all these strategies rely on the paladin’s spiritual attunement ‘emo’ class ability.

Seal of Blood: The bread and butter dps seal for paladins, the fact that you hurt yourself every time you deal damage means you receive a steady stream of damage.

Glyph of Spiritual Attunement: This glyph seems pretty interesting and is something I'm considering for my third glyph slot. An extra 2% of mana received through spiritual attunement doesn’t sound like much, but its something that will always be there and doesn’t need a gimmick or a proc to work.

Dark runes: These babies are especially tasty for retadins even though they’re a low level Azeroth drop and you can farm these from the Satyr demons in Felwood. Not only do they give you a decent amount of mana, they also do damage to you. Woohoo!

Hand of Sacrifice: Ah this ability was used by Alliance paladins in lieu of Seal of Blood. When you put this on your Main Tank, you should take some nice damage for using this.

Taking damage: Ok quite obvious and not for the faint of heart. Deliberately taking damage (say through AoE damage) means you can hurt yourself enough to get a nice amount of mana from a healer.

So there you go, some ideas to deal with mana issues. Just one final thought though, I rarely use the Art of War proc on myself unless I'm desperate since you would a) use mana for the heal and b) not get any mana back because spiritual attunement doesn’t work for self heals!

Cheers,

Rex

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Mana issues

Mana is always a touchy issue for paladins (and to a lesser extent Enhance shamans).

So what is the issue in particular for Paladins?

Well with the recent nerf to Judgement of the Wise, mana given has gone down from 33% to 15% of base mana.

Now at 70, I have noticed the difference in the loss of mana, but I have compensated by simply judging wisdom all the time. This is not a fun mechanic though, because in PvE, I feel like I am forced to use JoW all the time and have lost the flexibility of being able to judge light.

So my view is that paladins should be able to sustain a single target rotation (Judgement, Crusader Strike and Divine Storm), and should only start to run oom by doing ‘extras’ like popping off a heal, using Hammer of Wrath, and dropping an AoE ability like Consecrate.

At 70 however, with a roughly 7k mana pool I can achieve all of the above a little too well, due to the intellect on my gear. This is what is causing a misconception that paladins will be OP at 80 in that a paladin will be able to use all of these abilities without going oom. What a larger part of the WoW community don’t realise is that at 80, all dps plate will not have intellect on it. Zero!

That means that an 80 would have about 5k mana (from what I’ve heard on the Beta forums) and retadins cannot do all of those things due to the tiny mana pool. Mana management becomes much more tricky as there is less room for extras. As it is, I rarely heal anyone (even myself) because a ret paladin’s mana is so small. Bandages, health pots and health stones are the order of the day.

What I am interested in though is how the new Divine Plea mechanic will come into play at level 71. Will this be our saviour to our oom problems? I’ll have to wait and see.

Monday, 10 November 2008

Just in time!

Ok, before I start, just bear in mind that I had actually gone to the gym before so I don’t feel so guilty!

I had previously resigned my fate to never seeing higher than T5 content. Well, fate has an interesting way of playing its cards so late.

A little while ago, a group of raiders and I left our old guild to form a new guild ‘Relentless’ with one purpose in mind: To see as much content as possible in Wotlk. What we wanted is to be professional at raiding (not necessarily hardcore), in other words, learn quickly and move on.

So we setup our new guild and had a core of about 12 members. Enough to do ZA but not much else until Wotlk hit.

It just so happened that we joined a pug SSC run, and I caught up with the raid at Leo (having already cleared Tidewalker, Fathom Lord Karathress and Hydross). Well we wiped a few times and decided to call it. That’s when our old raid leader suggested we try and pug Hyjal or BT. We settled on doing Hyjal first and even though we had no experience in the place, put a pug raid together.

Our strategy for each boss was to simply read up the strat and youtube the video and have a go. We absolutely smashed it despite never being there, and ploughed through 4/5 bosses! But we wanted more, knowing that Wotlk is so close, we put a new raid together for BT. So when we stepped into BT, we then took down the first 4 bosses, Najentus, Supremus, Shade and Teron Gorefiend… babam! We one shotted Najentus, Shade, and two shotted Supremus and Teron. We eventually called it quits after downing Teron Gorefiend at 1.30 in the morning.

So after an epic session of some 13.5 hours straight, the new guild progressed through three SSC bosses, four Hyjal bosses and four BT bosses. While this is seriously unhealthy, I have no regrets going into Wotlk now and am happy to move on. I was happy with my own personal performance too, pumping out a sustained 1.7k dps throughout the raid.

So thanks Blizz for nerfing the content and giving us new abilities! I finally got to see end game content.

We’re going back into SSC to have another go at Leo and then to BT to have a crack at Bloodboil, Reliquary of Souls and Mother (I heard that she’s doable without Shadow Resist gear). I am really excited, because I know that there’s a lot at stake. We only get one night to have a crack at this and then the opportunity will be gone when the expac hits next week.

The funny thing was we also filled our raiding roster in one day! Players recognised that we were good despite never being there and decided to join us now that we were a ‘tier 6 guild’. We took in those pugs that ran with us and put them on trial. By the time we hit Teron, the pug raid was now almost a full Relentless raid! I know, post 3.0.2 the nerfed raiding doesn’t mean anything, but it’s a good indication that with the talent that we have, this guild will succeed in the expansion and will attract quality applicants.

Saturday, 1 November 2008

This has got to stop!

Another nerf hotfixed to live? Give us a freakin break!

This time I can't bubble and pop wings simultaneously anymore.

Actually its even WORSE than it was in pre 3.0!

Not only that Forbearance used to be on a 1 min cooldown. Now its 2 minutes!

Once again Avenging Wrath is ABSOLUTELY USELESS in Arena now. Retadins won't be popping wings again because of the freaking debuff.

GFG.

Friday, 31 October 2008

Achievements

Achievements are such a sadistic thing, its either you love em or you hate em.

On one hand they give you a real sense of finishing something worthwhile in the game. On the other, it shows you how far you still got to go! For some reason, achievements feels like something that belongs in Grand Theft Auto. Its not something that you NEED but its something that you WANT.

I've quickly realised that with achievements, you need to compromise. Its close to insanity trying to get the same achievements done for all your characters, so I try and focus on Rexkicker only for achievements. I find myself making strange choices. I'm now rerunning all the heroics to get the achievements, but am torn between just getting them done for the sake of my epeen on Rexkicker or running them on Rexana so she can get badges and gear!

I've also formed new objectives for Rexkicker in terms of achievements. At the top of my hit list is to get exalted with all the main alliance factions and to finish my Lower City Rep to finish my rep achievements with the Outlands factions. Pro tip is that I need to do the Exodar starting quests because they give 'alliance' rep!

Blizzard should consider making achievements accountwide rather than just character only!

Thursday, 30 October 2008

The rollercoaster ride that is Retribution

To nerf or not to nerf that is the question.

Like a kid addicted to red cordial, I'm addicted to constantly checking the beta forums for signs of more nerfs or unnerfs.

The constant QQ is starting to take its toll, if we win its because we're OP and not because of any skill. I did get to the 1600's with a pve geared holy pally partner, so that was enough to get my S4 chest. Not that I care much about doing Arena at this point in the game anyway, but its nice gear anyway.

BG's have been pretty fun. I was minding the flag at AB and took down 4 horde against myself, two were undergeared as anything and I had to bubble, and I had to use LOH but man that would have been soul destroying!

So what now at the moment...

Well I'm definitely gonna pick up the 4 piece scourge set that you can pick up from the undead event. It looks so freakin awesome, I wish the Naxx tier gear looked as good as this, but sadly no.

Ah well, I'm gonna see if I can get the set for Rexana now at least to give her some decent gear to level with!

Cheers all,

Rex

Sunday, 12 October 2008

Dual specs

I have admittedly stayed away from the PTR because if I know if I touch it, it would be unbearable to try and play a paladin on live! I've been hearing great things about ret, but I think I prefer to wait for the surprise.

One interesting change will be the introduction of dual specs in Wotlk and this is something that I am really looking forward to. It just makes sense that to address a healer and tank shortage, you can't penalise hybrids!

But is two specs enough? Maybe I'm just being greedy, but hybrids really needs at least a third spec. A pure dps class I understand, you have your PvE raiding spec and a PvP/Arena spec. But for hybrids its always that much harder. I would love a PvP spec for Rexkicker and a PvE spec, however that leaves no room to take on alternative roles like tanking or healing. So again this doesn't solve the the tanking or healing shortage!

Oh yeah I got my shaman to 70, my fourth toon. I love this period of changing your gear from green to purples and watching your dps sharply increase as you do so. I gotta admit, you really do feel like a hero when you pop 'Heroism'. pew pew pew.

Tuesday, 23 September 2008

The tables have turned!

I'll admit it, I have been addicted to reading the WoW pally forums of late. The ongoing Wotlk discussion has been a hotbed of Ret is OP posts and Lol Holy remarks. It seems that the shoe is on the other foot for the moment, and retadins are enjoying the irony of holy paladins being told that they won't be brought to raids because of their low heals (sound familiar?). I've even starting seeing the term 'Loly paladin' spring up! It justs makes for some fun reading watching the paladin community tear itself apart.

I remember reading a post from Coriel at Blessing of Kings that summed up the in-fighting of paladins nicely.
While I haven't been the biggest fans of holy paladins, I'm not blind and I know how important healers are. Healing is a thankless job, without the kudos that tanks get or the fun of being dps. So why would you try and make it any more painful than it has to be and simply give a holy paladin a HOT or an AoE heal? There is a very fine balance though. On one hand, I want holy paladins to be viable, but on the other, I don't want holy paladins to be too good so that holy is the default paladin spec.

On a different note, I've already grown tired of prot tanking as well. I dunno, I'm just not getting the feedback that I need to want to try and play the game properly as a tank. I pretty much faceroll my keyboard on trash pulls once I figure out where to line of sight the mobs. While your dps loves it as they don't have to worry about cc, its not very engaging and I end up just playing a mini game of how many mobs I can pull before my gear gives out and the raid wipes.

Anyway, its back to browsing the paladin forums with some beer and popcorn.

Cheers!

Rex

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Shamans

Well, while I'm waiting for the guild to progress through the content I'm enjoying tanking for the moment. There's not much upgrades for me as ret anyway so I'm happy to help out. I gotta be careful though, there's two things bugging me, the first is that I am trying to gear for three specs now (yes including holy), which put a serious drain on my dkp. The second is that the more gear I get for a particular spec the more I will be pushed towards that role. So its like 'hey you got all that tanking gear, you must tank!'

Fortunately the raid leader has been impressed with the fact that I can play all the specs. Many pallies I know can either tank, heal or dps. Few can play two specs well and I know of only 3 or 4 pallies that can play all three. Admittedly, its been awhile since I've had to heal on a regular basis, but at this late stage of the game I don't mind what role I play, I'm just wanting to help the guild as much as I can so I can see some T6 content before Wotlk comes out. The plan being that once Wrath hits, I can respec back to ret to level and hopefully stay ret in the expansion.

I've noticed a bit of a hole in the melee group, we have no enhance shaman! I have been furiously levelling Rexana, and am 61. But I've hit a wall now, you see she's enhance but I haven't been able to get any good one handed axes or maces to level with (the ones she has now are the level 42 Flurry Axe and a mid 50s mace). So its taking longer and longer to kill stuff and the grind has been mind numbingly dull. I'm contemplating respeccing to elemental, but I'm just not sure. Anyone got any advice if I can get any 1h weapons in the outlands for a shaman? I'd prefer to stay away from daggers.

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Close the dps gap in Wotlk?

Ok so you're gonna get a double post cause I'm having withdrawal symptoms.

I've been trying to keep up to speed with the WoW forums with paladins so close to getting their 'second pass'. The major thing that has been irking people is the change in the beta to Judgement of the Wise. I'm sure you've heard it by now, the mana has been reduced to providing 10 members mana regen equal to 0.5% of their maximum mana per second. From what I understand, its been crippling ret in the beta, and they're going oom in about 1 minute.

I'm not worried though, I'm confident that Blizzard will fix it as it would be ridiculous that a class would be screwed this badly (yes I know that pallies have often gotten the raw end of the stick). I hope that in the final version they give the old JotW just to the paladin itself and have the current 'replenish' effect.

No my real concern is the removal of much of the utility as buffs won't stack with other classes and that only one will take effect, warrior shouts and improved blessing of might for example. So if we can't stack buffs in the expansion, well there will be little need to take a ret paladin for utility. So without utility, our dps would have to be very damn near that of pure dps classes. Its a fair trade off, less utility for more dps.


Offtopic, I'm thinking about my professions. I've still got mining as a profession, and I know I should drop mining and pick up enchanting to min-max. Then again, wotlk is so close on the horizon that it seems that it'll be too hard to try and level blacksmithing without it. So I'll probably stick with mining until I hit 80 and then switch to enchanting after that (or maybe the new inscription profession if it offers some neat 'inscription only' attributes.

I had limited success with blacksmithing in TBC, but in Wotlk Blacksmithing is getting buffed so you can add a gem socket to some gear! Hold the phone, that would be like getting free stats like enchanters do. So maybe to min/max you might have to be a blacksmith! Plus hopefully you'll still be able to make your kickass weapon as well. Two incentives to level blacksmithing in the expansion? I'm sold.

Back from the Brink

Hi all!

I wasn’t happy with the way my last post ended, and reading back, it was pretty bleak.

But for every ending there is a new beginning. I have taken this opportunity to expand my tanking experiences, and I have built up a really good foundation for being a pally tank. Still, there is much more I need to learn, and I feel like I’m just scratching the surface.

I’m actually enjoying tanking to be honest, and it has breathed fresh life into old content as it’s the same fight but a whole different point of view. My biggest challenges have been to figure out how many adds I can take on before deciding ‘oh crap, that’s too many’, and how to take enough damage so I don’t become mana starved (I’ve even started using Don Carlos' Famous Hat as part of my tanking gear).

I can see why tanks are ‘precious’ though. You get the highs when you know you’ve done a good job and the crushing lows when you fail. Its much more visible as a tank as well. If you screw up and die as dps, the raid will continue to function, but if you screw up and die as a tank everyone dies. The feedback is instant and can be catastrophic. Its strange though, being a tank sets you apart from most of the guild and you can start getting a bit of an ego!

On the ret side of things, I have been given a chance to shown what I can do and have regularly cemented a top 5 dps finish, which means I can easily get a spot as ret if they have enough tanks (woot!). But from my WWS reports, it just hasn’t been as good as what I'm used to. I was by far from being happy with it and I don’t know what has been going wrong. I’ve since done an audit on my gear, and resocketed and re-enchanted my gear to balance it back up and I even got my gear to hit exactly 95 hit rating! Hopefully my next ret outing will be much better.

I do have an interesting problem though, I’ve started to see armor penetration and haste start to sneak onto my gear and am torn into what I should stack? I know that haste isn’t the best for alliance rets as the haste won’t increase the amount of Seal of Command procs, but on the other hand, armor pen isn't as efficient as well since Seal of Command is holy damage. So that leaves my physical attacks, what would benefit my auto attacks and crusader strikes more then? Haste or Armor Pen? Hmmm……

I guess I’m leaning towards armor pen more, and I just want to make sure it’s the way to go.

Cheers!

Rex

Sunday, 3 August 2008

The end?

Well it had to happen sooner or later. I've tried my best to get into a raiding guild on Dreadmaul that would take a retribution paladin, but all I've had is rejection after rejection. No matter how good my gear is, or how well I do or how much knowledge I acquire about my class, without the support of a guild, I cannot put that gear to use and do what I do best.

The only way forward for me now is to spec prot and stick with it until the expansion comes out. Hopefully, then people will see that retribution paladins are needed. C'mon Blizzard, please don't nerf retribution too hard (the Art of War nerf was far too extreme).

I'm actually bitterly disappointed at the moment, all the hours that I've put in to make Rexkicker 'all he could be'. As of today, I have 75 days played on him, but I guess that wasn't enough.

So I think that this will be my last post for quite some time, this blog was about the view and the life of a retribution paladin, but if I can't be that paladin, then there is no point to keep writing this blog. I might log on and post my thoughts on the beta and the expansion though.

Thanks all for reading.

Cheers,

Rex

Thursday, 31 July 2008

What to do?

I'm still looking for a guild, so I've got all this extra time up my sleeve. Soo whats a guy to do in the meantime?

Well I've started closing off the loose ends, working on those things I've let go for ages, like I still have a part of the Onyxia attunement and trying to level my cooking.

Should keep me entertained for a bit.

Oh well...

Monday, 28 July 2008

Updates, Wotlk and mana...

Well its been an interesting time, I finally got my Shard of Contempt to drop, but unfortunately the guild I was in fell apart and so I haven't had a chance to use it. I am once again guildless...

Hmm I guess I'll be looking for a new raiding guild now that's probably doing ssc/tk, its a pretty big longshot to get into a top end raiding guild, especially on a new server, but we'll see.

So in the meantime I've been working on trying to get my Arena up but i'm failing really bad. Part of it, I'd like to think is because I'm on BG9, yup the infamous Bloodlust battle group. Sure you might think it really doesn't matter until you're at the pro-end of rankings, but when you're going up against 'Gladiators' in the first couple of weeks of S4, its kinda depressing seeing them in the 1500 bracket. Its also a major disadvantage to be up against some US players on an Oceania server, seeing as I play with a 350+ ping.

Anyway, that's enough of the whinge session, what I really wanted to talk about was some of the things I'm seeing out of the Wotlk beta patch notes. Such as base mana...

My first response was that of horror when I read that a lot of spells were costing a % of base mana. For example

Repentance: 'Repentance mana cost changed to 9% of base'.

But when you actually think about what is base mana it is much less scary. Base mana is the amount of mana you have before any intellect on any gear, enchants or buffs. So a 70 pally with 2953 base, will only cost 266 mana from casting Repentance.

I'm also really glad that Repentance is getting buffed to a 1 minute CC on a variety of mobs such as humanoids, undead, dragonkin, demons and... Giants (what the?). So now that pallies have CC it's one less excuse not to take a ret paladin along in a 5-man.

Overall, I'm pretty happy with the way things are turning out from a swag of changes to ret that will give great utility and an increase in dps.

Cheers!

Rex

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Where is my SHARD?!

So I've been making a big effort to try and get the Shard for Rexkicker, but it simply won't drop!

Its been impossible to get groups as a ret pally, so I've gone prot temporarily so I can farm the place quickly in a decent group.

Oh yeah, I got all the cards I needed for both the Blessings Deck and the Furies Deck at the same time! Man I was stoked. Problem was I had to travel to Horde territory to get it, and on PvP server, its not always the most fun thing to do... The furies deck has helped me heaps in tanking H MgT and made the job easier.

I'm itching to try the blessings deck though, but I would love to pair it with the shard!

But apart from that I guess I'm waiting for the expansion and am drooling over any tidbits of information I can find on the new talents for pallies (if it ever gets released).... Will we get something as cool as the warrior's Titan's Grip? Probably not but surely Blizz has to do something to halt a mass exodus of pallies once the deathknights are out.

What do I expect from the expansion?

Well reading what the other hybrids got in terms of proper CC in the alpha, druids have their roots work indoors and shaman's get hex, so hopefully we get something just as good! Having a decent CC can make or break being selected in a 5 man group.

Oooh I got a another group for H MgT... here we go again!

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Moonkin tanking

So this new guild has started to do 25 mans, and our first crack was Gruul's. It was the first time for a few people and after about 5 or 6 wipes it got called. I had fun though. I got to use the Moonkin tank! Well only for Kiggler the Crazed, but still it was an achievement and was pretty cool to sit there in my PvP gear and nuke the crap out of it.

I've been trying to get that elusive Shard of Contempt for Rexkicker too. So I respecced Prot to try and get it. My tanking leaves a lot to be desired, because it basically went, pull, take a couple down, wipe, pull, take a couple down wipe. I happily paid everyone in my group about 100g all up so they wouldn't rage quit on me.

Unfortunately the Shard didn't drop but I did get a consolation prize. The Commendation of Kael'thas is now mine.

What a ripper!

Well gotta go, about to pull Curator.

Cheers!

Rex

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

10 things I wish I knew earlier...

Hey guys

I was just thinking about how much I learnt playing a paladin and most of it through sites like Cromfel's. I'm not a great theorycrafter but I try and get the gist of what the point is. Also yes I'm alliance so this is written from an alliance viewpoint (sorry Belfs). Anyway... here are my top 10 things I wish I knew earlier!

1. Get Hit Capped

It seems counter intuitive at first. 'But if I stack hit, I miss out on other stats like Strength and Crit!'. As a general rule, getting ~95 hit (with the Precision talent) is extremely important as it will stop misses in PvE raids (but not dodges or parries). Missing autoattacks means you also miss the chance to proc Seal of Command. Its one of the biggest contributors to your dps. The Cenarion Expedition head enchant 'Glyph of Ferocity' is a great place to start.

2. Install Omen

Its a threatmeter so you can monitor your threat against the tanks. It boggles the mind that controlling your threat is such a huge part of PvE and yet Blizz didn't think it was necessary to include it as a standard feature in the UI and instead left it to 3rd parties.

3. Install Pally Power

It doesnt matter if you are Ret, Holy or Prot, the Pally Power mod saves a big headache caused by organising buffs. The main advantage of Pally Power is that a raid leader (preferably a pally) can setup and assigning buffs remotely. You can also see who has spent talents improving their buffs (i.e. taking improved might), and allocate the responsibility for that buff accordingly.

4. Stength > Attack Power

With 5/5 in Divine Strength, 1 point of strength = 2.2 Attack Power. So if you're thinking about whether to socket a +8 Strength Gem or +16 Attack Power, the +8 Strength Gem wins hands down.

5. Use Rank 1 Seal of Command (if Alliance)

I'm always watching my measly mana pool, and prefer to use Rank 1 Seal of Command. The only difference between Rank 1 SoC and the Rank 6 SoC is that the judgements do less damage with Rank 1. The SoC melee attack procs are the same.

6. Get a swing timer

A swing timer basically shows you the time between swings. It helps you to time your attacks so that you maximise your autoattacks and SoC procs by not judging at the wrong time. Quartz is a popular mod for this.

7. Pot

Bring your mana pots and use them! We need mana for our attacks like Crusader Strikes, and don't feel guilty about potting to keep putting out the damage. Casters do it, and so should we.

8. Stacking intellect is a waste in PvE

You should be gearing like an Arms warrior. Treat intellect like a bonus stat, a nice to have so long as it doesn't take away from your other stats. That said, I do like a bigger mana pool in PvP as we have to put up with Hunter Viper Stings, mana burns, and the fact that our mana regeneration is downright pathetic.

9. Windfury is godly

When you get the chance to group with a Shaman and they are nice enough to drop windfury, you will see the difference. Because we swing a big two hander, the extra attack a windfury proc makes has a much greater impact on our dps than say a fury warrior or a rogue where it would only proc a one-handed weapon. It took me ages to actually see the difference because I didn't realise....

10. If you get Windfury DO NOT USE WEAPON BUFFS

That includes sharpening stones, wizard oils, weightstones, mana oils etc. This removes the windfury effect. If you do get grouped with a shaman and already have a weapon buff, simply right click on the weapon buff in your top right hand corner to get rid of it.

That's it... if I screwed up something or didn't reference someone... well don't sue me.

Kthxbai

Rex

Sunday, 25 May 2008

Been awhile...

Sarp!

I promised that I'd get round to updating my blog this weekend, and while its been awhile since my last post I haven't not been busy. Its amazing what else you do in the game (and RL) when raiding is taken out of your schedule (I've accepted that I'll probably never see MH or BT at this stage of the game on the pally).

Firstly, I got my epic flight form for Rexamus and haven't stopped zipping around Outlands. So finally I think he's a complete druid.


But of course the paladin has got some love, and I've been gaming full on trying to bring his PVP gear up to scratch. So I've picked up the Medallion of the Alliance, Vindicators Bracers and Boots, got my S3 legs and crafted the Stormherald! Pew pew pew. I've gotten him to about 330 resilience now and am using the 0/20/41 build which is working really well in the bg's. What I haven't done is upgrade Rexkicker's shoulders! He's still wearing that entry level rep blue gear. What has been funny though is how your shoulders are so noticeable. I'm sure I've been targeted by horde thinking that my gear would be scrub, but underneath the surface there's a 4/5 S3 ret pally. Still, I am looking forward to getting the S2 shoulders once S4 hits.

I'll have to give you an updated screenshot of the way Rexkicker looks now, to show what I mean.

Anyway, back to PvP. I'm having a problem of getting stable arena teams for the moonkin and pally. I still have alot to learn in the arena, so I don't believe I'll be getting too high of a rating just yet. But then again, 10 games each week just isn't going to cut it anymore, I'm getting sick of my sub-1500 rating, I want to start winning!

So what combos are good for a ret pally 2v2 and 3v3 wise (I hear alot about 3v3 resto shaman/ms warrior/ret pally setup)?

I'm trying to plan for Season 4 as well. I decided to pick up the Veteran's ring especially because I bet it'll be removed from vendors to make way for the new stuff. The Vindicators ring would then drop down to replace it. Seeing as I'd have to get a 1650 rating to pick up the new ring, So I reckon its best to get the Veteran's ring now.

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Why?

I'm currently having the why bother moment? Why do I bother being a ret paladin, considering the amount of abuse I cop sometimes, is it really worth the trouble? At least on Barthilas I kinda earnt a decent reputation of being a good ret paladin. But on the new server I really am starting all over again. More importantly, why do I even care and why does it irk me when I lose, given it is just a game after all...

I don't know and I can't explain it. I wonder if people actually read this blog and whether writing is a complete waste of time. I've thought about trying to grind the rep on the mage and gearing it up, but the passion that I feel when doing it compared to the pally or druid is just not there. I've learnt that deep down I do enjoy those outcast specs and no joy comes from playing the mage.

So what is it that drives me? When I pvp, I get blinded by the bloodlust. I feel the thrill of trying to chase someone down, and unleashing havoc with my 2 hander at point blank. I like annoying that enemy that tries to nuke down my teammate by putting a BoP or BoF on them or throwing them a heal or cleansing a debuff. On my druid I get the feeling of invincibility with my uber armor and impressive nukes, hots and treants. It is this passion that I get from hybrids that I just haven't got with other classes. Maybe its the variety of gameplay, the adrenalin rush of having to be aware of so many things that I find drives me to play a hybrid rather than a one-dimensional class.
Or maybe I've had one pint too many from a night out and should just sleep it off instead of writing this....

Friday, 2 May 2008

I can taste it!

Just gonna do a quick one today.

I did the epic flight form chain and just need to do the heroic run! Man that is frustrating.

Picked up the Vindicators Neckpiece from the boomkin, and he's up to almost 350 res. :)

Doing some PvP on the Pally, and have gone a 10/0/51 spec. I tried going a prot/ret spec but it just wasn't my style. Maybe when they bring WotLK and I get to level 80, I'd put points into Prot to pick up Reckoning. Man that would be sweet.

Also checked the 2.4.2 patch notes at first the pally change looks great on paper, but then you realise its just a bug fix :(

Oh well back to waiting for the expansion...

Tuesday, 29 April 2008

A new hope

So I made the massive decision to switch to a new realm. I've been fed up with the 400+ queues on Barthilas and have made the switch to the new PvP realm Dreadmaul and have brought over all my characters to start over.

The first week has been interesting, I've seen the population explode to about 8500. I've been watching the census carefully on the server, it was originally 60% alliance 40% horde, a pleasant change compared to the 60% horde 40% alliance. For those of you that haven't had the pleasure of playing on a PvP realm, you always feel like a 70 is gonna drop out of the sky and go for the gank, and when it is heavily in favour of the other faction its much more annoying. But the ratio has slid in favour of the horde now, and is now 47% alliance 53% horde. I hope it doesn't slide too much further.

With raiding pretty much out of the question until the new guilds settle in, its also had an impact on my gold income. With no raids going on, there's no new gear being obtained, and therefore no need for JC gems. Still, there's always PvP and on this server in lieu of raiding, the prices of PvP gems have spiked so I'm still making the odd bit of dough here and there.

I have used this time to save up and do more dailies than I normally do, and have put together another 5k gold to save up for my epic flight form for Rexamus! Pew pew. I was however stunned to learn I also have a 17 step quest chain to go through to get it. Thank you Blizz, gfg! FFS! Still, at least the end boss I have to kill in Sethekk Halls has a chance to drop an epic mount. That might make it worthwhile, so fingers crossed!

I'm not sure where to from here though. I want to help out my mates gear up, and I'm sure you don't want to hear about the countless stories I'm going to have to tell about running Kara again, I think we've all been through that. I'm grinding heaps and heaps of PvP at the moment as well so I'm hoping to get some more resilience up. The druid is sitting on 328 so far, and I want to see if I can crack the 400 mark sometime soon.

I love the Balance druid on the battlefield, its a walking tank, and is so far packing about 900 spell damage AND healing. And with those HOTs, this thing is a behemoth.

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Sup

Ah server restart, a perfect time to put down some thoughts.

Ya I know I haven't updated this in awhile, but I've had nothing much to report. I quit the raiding guild I was in, basically because I wanted to focus on other things, helping some RL mates gear up and focus on earning some cash. I've joined a guild called Brace Yourself, which have just started doing SSC, so I hope I can contribute to helping these guys move forward.

I've always been reasonably good at making gold, as a hybrid though you gotta be. The constant respecs (especially when I'm in a non-dps spec) means it can put a real drain on your resources. So in the meantime I levelled a mage to 70. I started from the get go specifically to level a jc and being a mage, can supply my mains with a constant supply of food tables. I figured he could basically live in Ironforge and port from place to place servicing players with their jc cuts. Its turned out really well, its now a side thing I do. My main focus now is to do the usual prospect and cut and put on the AH. So now I just do some cuts and make some cash, all within the comfort of IF.

On another note, I've got enough Arena points to get my S3 helm now for Rexamus. It'll be some pew pew pew!

Wednesday, 2 April 2008

New build?

I've been wracking my brains of late trying to figure out a way to pick up Vindication without giving up Kings or my Pursuit of Justice (I believe that more speed is less time spent running back to the boss for more dps. I think I've finally cracked the nut.

I thought about going only 1 point of PoJ but at that level you only get 5% increase in speed, and if you're gonna do that, you might as well get Cat's swiftness or Boar's speed enchants which give you an 8% speed increase. Problem for me is that I use the Surefooted enchant (for the +10 hit rating) and am finely balanced at 95 hit rating.

So what to give up? Well I reckon I'm going to only take 2/3 out of Sanctified Judgement. I'm hoping that the mana I can pick up from proccing JoW off Vindication will be enough to offset the lesser mana efficiency.

I'm not a big fan of respeccing 3 times a week, so I hope this all rounder build will give me enough flexibility in both the 10 man and 25 man raid environment and save me some gold.

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

Resistance gears

Well my last post about MgT got me thinking about resistance gears especially for high end content and this darn heroic MgT. I hear there is a fight in BT that you may need to stack resistance (shadow?). Well my refitting of my old Horseman's Helm to include a resistance gem could be taken further and add 2 more resist all gems to the remaining slots. I also have some other old epix I could refit, my legs from Heroic mech have 3 gem slots, and I should be able to upgrade my chestpiece to the Bulwark of Ancient Kings with some bought Nether Vortexes (thanks 2.4) and put 3 gems in there (I'm going to go with the Vindicators S3 chestpiece over the BoAK for general PVE). In MgT normal, I can get an upgrade to my boots, which means I can refit my existing boots with a further 2 resistance gems as well.

So the end result? Well that would give me a total of 11 gem slots (i.e. 44 resistance to all schools of magic) that would be a good all round resistance set, I just hope that it doesn't cripple my dps stats.

Monday, 31 March 2008

MgT?

Funny about the new Magister's instance in 2.4, no-one knows what the heck to call it in Looking for Group. I've watched with interest though, and it can't be MT because of Mana Tombs or Mag because of Magtheridon's Lair, so I've started seeing the acronym MgT start to take hold... well at least on Barthilas. So... what do you guys call it?

Anyway, over the weekend I took Rexkicker through the non-heroic version, and only remembered towards the end of instance that my new fear works on demon's as well. Damn, I wish I remembered that earlier, I want to CC that demon add on the third boss that does the fire damage. Wiped a few times on Kaelthas and a few accidental pulls on trash, but all in all not to bad for a geared group. The epic druid cape dropped with res and armor, but it got De'd.

So I then took a break and did the Sunwell Offensive dailies, I got a Badge of Justice from one of the supply packs! Holy cow, these are definitely on my to do list from now on, goodbye Skettis dailies. Being on a PvP server though, its all out warfare, the dailies take ages to do because of the constant ganking going on. I wear my full PvP gear to quest there trinkets and all. Sure it takes a bit longer but its much better than waiting 2 mins to res after you've been ganked for the fifth time.

I then tried MgT on Heroic, the lure of an epic off each boss was too much to ignore and I'm really gunning for the Shard of Contempt seeing as expertise isn't exactly the easiest stat to get. We only got up to the second boss though before our tank and one of our dps had to go to ZA. Doesn't matter though, we weren't getting past the second boss anyway as we wiped about 3 times on him.

The arcane damage was just to great. I was getting hit for about 3k per blast and with the Violet Badge trinket equipped (45 Arcane Resistance), it mitigated up to half that amount. But it wasn't enough, and I'm not going to let some frickin arcane damage stop me from some epic loots. So I went through my stash of gear that I don't use anymore and dusted off the old Horseman's Helm! I bought a cheap '+4 resist all' gem from the AH and a not so cheap Glyph of Arcane Warding head enchant from the Sha'tar Rep Vendor. So now I'm packing 69 Arcane Resistance and am keen to give it another shot. I'll wear this helm against Kaelthas as well, so its not as if I've gone crazy and done this just for one measly boss. The Horseman's laugh will be heard again!

Saturday, 29 March 2008

2.4 PvP and Project X - Kara test

Well I'm in Kara atm on Rexamus and waiting for the group to get together for the Prince pull so I thought I'd update my blog.

Since 2.4 I've been busy buying the entry level scrub pvp gear for the moonkin and pally. Its helped heaps and filled in the holes in my arena sets. In fact for the boomkin I have enough resilience now to reach the 224 cap (sitting at 228).

So I've decided to do a small road test with the panzerkin and its been pretty fun tanking trash and stuff and still standing. I'm having mana issues but hopefully once I get more vengeful pieces and a good headpiece, it should help.

The ret pally saw some SSC/TK action last night and we did Lurker and Leo. I finally managed to down the bugger, he's been annoying me since on the previous 3 attempts we haven't been able to do it. The Tsunami Talisman dropped and bidding got out of control, going for 900 dkp, 3 times more than I have in total!

On lurker I was the top dps a first for me, and a sign that I've caught up gearwise. I was flying blind in there, no threatmeter, damage meters or swing timers, so when they posted the results I was shocked with my 960 dps. I'm sure I was spamming CS at the wrong times without my trusty swing timer so I'm confident that next time, I can get more.

Someone asked me how high my attack power can go, and I said it can get over 4k. Which is a bit nuts and hard to believe sometimes but it does happen, have a look below. I was seeing about 4.1-4.5k crits at this level, so its pretty cool when it does happen.




Oh wait the fights starting...

Ah crap, no T4 helm. But at least I have enough badges to get the Cloak of Subjugated power.

That little baby has pushed my armor to 21.7k armor and my stam is just under 10k. A nice upgrade and that next step closer to the dream. :)

Monday, 17 March 2008

Karathress, Morogrim and Vashj

Well a few new fights for me to get used to in SSC.

From my view, Karathress was pretty much take down the Shaman add, take down the hunter add and then pew pew the boss. Simple game plan but hard to execute cause of the damage the tanks were taking. Also the freaking totems! Man those things suck. So yeah totems FIRST!

Morogrim, well this fight I had to strap on my prot gear and tank the murlocs as our normal prot pally had net issues. So in this fight, we had the warrior tanks round em up from the north and south and drop em off to me where I dumped consecrates to get aggro. It was a little different and I enjoy doing it once in awhile. Different pace and variety is always good. I've scraped together 492 defence so at least i'm crit immune.

Tried Vashj tonight, but after about 8 wipes it was enough. This looks like a very technical fight, looks doable but tricky.

Still, got some nice loots namely the Razor Scale Battlecloak and the Worldbreaker! So now I'm gonna retire my Gorehowl and temporarily retire my Cloak of Darkness (until I get some phat BT gem to slot in there to out do the RSB).

The upgrades are doing their bit, I've started to consistently produce 1k+ sustained dps and thats a big psychological barrier thats been broken. Now agon
isingly close to breaking 2k ap unbuffed (sitting at 1980!). Lost about 2% crit by using the World Breaker over the Gorehowl. But the +5 expertise rating from being
human, weapon proc, slower weapon speed and higher top end damage should more than compensate.

Ah well I guess I'll get Vashj next time :)

Thursday, 13 March 2008

I got a fever!

And the cure, is more dps!!!

Its been a big step progression wise for me with this new guild. I've now cleared 3/4 TK and 2/6 SSC. I keep getting stuck on Leo, and haven't quite gotten used to the timing of his whirlwind (even when using Deadly Boss Mods). Luckily I can bubble my way out of them, but it means I've also had to hold off on using Avenging Wrath (stupid forbearance)... So hopefully soon when I'm good enough at the fight, I can start using my AW without hesitation.

I also came off trial and got my first piece of SSC/TK gear during the week. The Greaves of the Bloodwarder dropped off the Void Reaver, and I was ecstatic to pick that little gem up for minimum dkp. No other bids, woot.

Did a Gruul's raid with a pug last night, trying to get my Dragonspine Trophy. I like doing pugs, because it allows me to demo to other players from lots of different guilds what a decently geared ret paladin can do. Besides, I was eager to test out the new legs! I was happy with the result, was around 930 dps for ages, but it fell to about 880 at the end when the Shammy got snapped. I'm yet to break 1k dps in a sustained fight though, so that and trying to break 2k ap unbuffed (without the Savagery enchant) is my other target. Some of the holy pallies whispered me after the raid, asking for advice about going ret and without making it too complicated I basically told them to get hit capped and gear like an arms warrior. That's what I enjoy most about being a ret paladin though, is helping those paladins that want to do something other than being a healbot. I've been invited back next week to pug for them again, and with that trinket as a lure, I might just be back!

On a side note, Rexamus also got his S3 gloves and Vindicator's belt. I'm inching closer to my panzerkin goal, but more importantly the gloves replaced his last piece of cloth gear, and is in pure leather caster gear. Now sitting at 9.2k health unbuffed and 19k armor, hopefully it shouldn't be too much longer before I can give it a good road test. Lithanial recommended a minimum of 20k armor and 10k health for a heroic so I'm closer to the mark now at least.

Wednesday, 5 March 2008

Project X update

Just thought I'd give a quick update on Project X.

The Badge of Tenacity has been acquired so I can scratch that off my list. Also got the Moonwalkers. While they moonwalkers aren't tanking specific, they're at least gonna get more armor than the cloth shoes he had while I find something alot more suitable.

The next stage of the gearing process will include 3 separate pieces to be acquired through separate means (pretty much pvp gear) but at the same time. The pvp items have great stam and resilience and will help gear Rexamus efficiently.

1) S3 gloves (one week - currently 1007 arena points): Obtaining this piece is a priority as this will ensure a complete set of leather caster gear.
2) Vindicators Wyrmhide Belt (one week - currently ~ 11k honor): Needing another 7k, the belt will give me a good stam boost.
3) Cloak of Subjugated Power (two weeks - currently 22 badges). Another nice cloak with resilience and also has more stam than my current blue caster cloak. I'll need to do another two Kara runs to get these badges.

These three items will add another 71 res, with my current gear takes Rexamus to a total of 160 res.

All in good time!

Monday, 3 March 2008

Being the newb

Well its been awhile and things have changed. I finally got accepted into a new guild 'Vague' that is in SSC and TK, and you get the feeling that you're being closely watched whenever you step into the 25 man raid environment.

Being the new guy, its a hard road being a ret paladin. I need to prove I'm good enough to earn a slot in the raid as a dps, and then later start squeezing into the shaman's windfury group. For ret paladins, having access to windfury makes or breaks our dps. It can be the difference between getting an invite or not. Why windfury? Well you get a free swing, and when your swing can crit for roughly 2.5k, you don't need to be a genius to work out that this will quickly add up.

This is the part where I think Blizzard really needs to step up to improve the retribution tree. Some paladins want an increase in dps, the majority want more utility, for me I think we need a combination of both. What I would like is a good group buff. 2% increase damage with improved Sanctity Aura is a joke. You can bet that if you have an enhance shammy, he's going to be in the prime melee group. A shammy brings strength of earth totem, heroism/bloodlust, heroic presence for that extra 1% hit and of course Windfury. While my pally brings extra raid buffs that are well received, the poor group buff means I'm left sitting on the sidelines.

So while I am sitting on the non-melee group, this is where I would like ret paladins to have an increase in personal dps. I would like a watered version of windfury (maybe a lower chance to proc?), so that when I do get placed in the real melee group I can use the proper windfury, and not be OP.

Sunday, 24 February 2008

Project X


So in between trying to gain acceptance of being a ret paladin, I have been working on another side project, making a Moonkin Tank (from hereon known as Project X). I intend to make this a high armored, high threat caster dps tank, and I'm taking it pretty seriously.

I finally ground enough rep last night to acquire the awesome Earthwarden, and slapped spell damage so I would still be able to put out more threat, kinda like how prot pallies do it I guess. The real kicker is the 500 armor on the weapon. Not many players are aware that Moonkins get a 400% bonus from armor items, the same as our feral druid cousins. But I'll put this down to the lack of moonkins overall so not many are aware of this. This is even less apparent when you consider that many of these boomkins wear a lot of cloth to keep up with the dps of mages. Still Rexamus isn't any exception. For the time being, he's got cloth shoes and gloves, but I'm hoping to replace the shoes with the Moon-walker badge rewards and the gloves from Kara.

A side benefit of grinding Cenarion Expedition rep is getting the Ashyen's Gift an excellent caster ring with a great amount of spell hit. Awesome as a moonkin. Getting this ring means that when I ding exalted with The Violet Eye, I can then trade in my caster version for the tanking version, which has got 392 armor on it... pure bliss for druids.

I'm also currently on the AH bidding for a Badge of Tenacity, comes with armor... oh yeah.

I can already see that making a tank is going to take a long time and insane amounts of pvp to get enough resilience to be crit immune (need 224 resilience from what I read). But much like my ret paladin, I think I'll be ecstatic with the result.




Sunday, 17 February 2008

GG

Well the guild is basically on life support. We lost our GM and Guild MT due to lack of progression which is pretty much the death knell for the guild. Now I have to go through the whole re-application process again. I can't go back to applying for another Kara/Gruul's guild since I need to progress further in the game.

Ah well, I've started applying and I'll see what comes out of it. For a ret paladin it's nigh on impossible. I can't simply spam trade saying 'Ret paladin lf SSC/TK guild', it'll just erupt a huge amount of 'Retlol' 'respec' calls. I just cbf with rejects like that. Some people are suggesting I apply as holy first and then switch ret later on, but that's not fair to myself or for the guild.

Sooo what else is there to do but run heroics in the meantime hey? I thought yeah a couple of smooth heroic runs would do the trick on my boomkin. But noooo...

I mean seriously WTF?!!! Ever since Blizz lowered the requirement from Revered to Honored to get into heroics its ruined the skill level. I'm sick to death of pug scrub tanks walking into heroics with greens that don't have any defense and expect to tank. Slack dps you can put up with, but a sloppy tank (especially in a heroic) is an absolute no-no. Its started happening in pug Karas too, getting tanks decked in greens is just doing my head in.

So now I'm grinding the BG's instead and letting off some pent up rage at some horde.

GFG.


Monday, 4 February 2008

As long as its not healing...

Its been an interesting couple of weeks since I last logged on. The guild has been downing Gruul on a regular basis, and most of our guys are so ready for SSC yet can't progress simply because of numbers. Its been incredibly frustrating. So a small number of our guild have started doing ZA, and I did manage to squeeze in there to have a bit of a tour around.

Been experimenting during this time, and last night was asked to be the MT tank in Kara for our second group, I was a little shocked to say the least. My previous tanking experience involved OT the week before and prior to that, was running lowbies through VC! I haven't tanked a 70 instance normal or heroic! I had seen pally tanking done a few times and know some awesome Prot Paladins like Colossis and Dumarthon (props guys). And much like Ret Paladins, aren't usually given their due.

Anyway, it went surprisingly well and was a lot of fun, and we cleared Kara (except for Nightbane and Netherspite) in about 5 and a half hours. Pretty good for my first try as mt. Rexkicker doesn't exactly have incredible gear either, about half Kara epics that the warriors didn't want and half blues. Big ups to the healers on that run, gg! :)
Oh managed to score Gorehowl from Prince! Not too shabby.

While prot tanking isn't really my forte, it sure beats the hell out of healing for me, and would have to come a close second. So I'm happy that I've had the experience doing all three raid aspects with my humble paladin, healing, dps and now main tanking. Its not something that every paladin has a chance to do, so I feel like I'm lucky in that regard.

I'm trying to decide on the Gorehowl vs my S1 Arena Mace. It basically comes down to whether the PVE dps is greater from the Gorehowl with more AP or the expertise racial bonus from the mace. Its a tough decision to spend the money on the mongoose enchant especially when I know the sword from ZA is within my grasp.

I'm also really close to getting my S3 Helm and upgrading my chest piece to the Bulwark of Kings. After tonight I'll be about 180 arena points short so should get that in a weeks time. I've also got 5 nethers for my chest now, and have another 30 badges (so potentially 8 nethers then), but my tanking was a bit too good, and now need to consider spending some of those badges on improving my tanking gear! Crap....

Thursday, 17 January 2008

Back to it

Well, things have calmed down now, the guild split into two out of which I joined one half of it, so its back to raiding again. We're desparately short on healers for the time being, so I switched to my healing gear (which isn't exactly shabby at 1600+ healing unbuffed) and helped out for Kara. It also meant that we could bring in a new healer to gear him up quick. Its a costly exercise though because that's 100g in respeccing costs (50g to spec holy and it'll cost me another 50g to spec back).

We had a full clear of Kara that went smooth as. We one shot everything except for Netherspite where we wiped a few times as we lost our OT by then. Although, it was worth it, as I picked up the Mithril Band of the Unscarred! Holy hell that's a nice ret pally ring. As far as I'm concerned it made healing worthwhile. I also got other great tanking gear too since our main tank is already fully geared and we had a druid off tank, I picked up new tanking boots, ring and helm.

I'm glad to see the guild getting back to business. Sure we're short on tanks and healers now, but at least we've retained enough of the old guild and brought in new 70's to field two Kara teams. Hopefully this should put us back on track for 25 man raids again.

Sunday, 13 January 2008

What the F?

I originally wanted to post about the usefulness of Pally power while raiding (and even in 5 mans with another pally), but the weekend proved to be quite an eventful one for my toons, and I'll have to post about that some other time.

So gearwise, Rexkicker got a few new things, the pants and the trinket from Heroic Mech dropped, so I was stoked, and plus I had finally saved up enough honor for the pvp necklace. This pushed the pally to the following base stats:

AP Unbuffed: 1868 (with Mongoose enchant)
Hit Rating: 93
Crit Chance: 27.36%

So I now feel that I've completed my gearing for Rexkicker now, and I've pushed him as far as I can on my own prior to getting any SSC and TK content.

I also gave the Boomkin some much needed love, and gave him a Kara run. But it was ace, Curator was nice enough to give up the Staff of Infinite Mysteries, and as I was the only caster that needed it (we had a strangely high number of melee), I got it by default! Hoot!

Then it all went to hell....

The GM went nuts after some guild world pvp didn't go according to plan. What I thought was supposed to be a casual fun event turned out to be the catalyst to destroy the guild. We had intended to raid a Horde city but while we managed to succeed in hijacking the zeppelin ferry, the guards kept knocking people (me included) off the airship with their knockback shots. So it kinda fell apart from there, but the GM rq'd the guild. What the heck for? Over some fun for a change?

Then it got worse, after convincing the interim GM that he was over it, he then just screwed everyone over. After being reappointed the GM (which I didn't agree with as you can't have a GM that rq's after petty incidents like this), he ninjas the guild bank of about 570g and about two tabs worth of valuable items (some worth about 2k gold!). He also appointed his level 1 alt as the GM, removed his main and stripped the officers of their rights so they couldn't do anything to stop the looting of the guild bank. He went further by taking down the forums and locking vent. He pretty much killed the guild because he didn't want it to live on after he was gone.

So Sepuku you tard, I hope you had your fun, and have to reroll horde because you are just a disgrace. Go emo yourself and /wrists.

Rant over.

Thursday, 10 January 2008

My Precious

Awesome! After spamming trade chat all day again yesterday for someone to make my Red Belt of Battle I gave up and started doing my mining run and thought I'd spam in the general world chat instead. And bingo! Found someone to make it, and they did it for cheaper than what I was offering in trade at 1200g... nice! I'm not totally broke now.ef

Got Gruul's tonight so the upgrade is very nice, but I just couldn't grind enough pvp in time to be able to pick up my necklace. Sitting on 12,200 and still need another 3k to pick it up. :P I'm starting to wondering why I ground all this rep to get the exalted rewards when the pvp gear available is far superior for pve than the pve gear.

Oh, and I'm digging this 2.3.2 patch. For me its a buff, since I run with low spell damage and hopefully it'll get leaner once I pick up my legs from heroic mech.



Tuesday, 8 January 2008

Needs more power... Rawr!

Man, started the long expensive road to squeeze more damage out of Rexkicker.

Since its server maintenance night, no raiding was on the cards and so I decided to do a heroic mech run to try and get a better trinket and the legs to replace my S1 Arena legs.

The legs are ultra cool, the Greaves of the Bloodwarder and I want them! Been there a few times now and still no luck on either of them.

I've started spamming the Barthilas trade chat as well looking for someone to make me the Red Belt of Battle, the best dps plate belt in the game. Offering about 1.4k gold for it, but no takers so far.

You're probably thinking, dude, make it easy for yourself, you could pimp a dps class for more dps at a lot less effort. Well yeah I could, but the same could be said for doing up a beat up car. You take an old car, and do it up, trying to get the most you can out of it, and forget about the cost. When you're finished, you stand back and enjoy it, and get immense sense of satisfaction that at the end of the day you have something unique that is not the cookie cut dps class you always see.

So that's what I want out of my retribution paladin. Something that at first people may scof at it, and just ask... Why?! But when they take a look under the hood, I hope they'll be pleasantly surprised.

Sunday, 6 January 2008

Grinding the BGs

Okay, so I'm grinding the Battlegrounds trying to get enough honor for the Vindicator's Pendant of Triumph.

I definitely think premades are the way to go though, ever since the
2.3 patch changes to AV have resulted in 0 bonus honor games, I think this is the only way.

Are these games lopsided? Sure are, and while I don't like the idea of premade groups (I'd rather a pug vs pug, myself), its ridiculous to keep coming up against them when I'm pugging. Nope premades are definitely the only way to go. It kinda reminds me of where in a fps game you stack one side with all your pro-gamer mates and just pwn pubs. Useless and doesn't mean much, but in wow where you get honor to buy gear, well it only encourages the ridiculous games we're seeing now.

Getting into a premade in the first place is a bit of an uphill struggle though. Our S1 and S2 arena gears have no resilience, so I kinda feel left out when I see the words...

LFM Org Eots/AB 250 resilience pst...

There's no way I got that much. So in the meantime i just ask em anyway, if they're just wanting to get the game going, more often than not, i'll just get an invite cause i'm a pally and they think i'll heal. Meh its their fault for not asking imo.

I've ground out 8k honor today, so hopefully I'll get that neck piece tonight, and when I meet the next ganker i'll be slightly that much harder to kill. Since its also good for pve, i'm hoping to meet Gruul's on better terms next time!

Now back to grinding....