Thursday, December 04, 2008

Questing Updates

The trouble with talking about the next few zones in Wrath is that they are chock-full of spoilers. Especially Dragonblight. Dragonblight is spoiler-city.

Since my last update, I've done Dragonblight, Grizzly Hills, Zul'Drak and Sholazar Basin. The rule of two levels per zone held very well. All the zones are very good, with lots of interesting quests.

I strongly recommend doing Grizzly Hills before Zul'Drak. There is a major questline in Grizzly Hills which sets up Zul'Drak.

I also felt that the rate of gaining gear upgrades was perfect. I was in mostly T4, and I was slowly replacing epics with good blues, starting at around level 74. It was a very gradual process, and felt just right to me. I didn't replace an epic with a green until Storm Peaks. (Technically, I'm also wearing green boots, but that's because I accidentally disenchanted my blue Retribution boots.)

I also did the dungeons Azjol-Nerub, Old Kingdom, Drak'Tharon, and Gundrak. They're solid dungeons. The last fight in Old Kingdom is spectacularly awesome, with an elegant and seamless use of phasing.

Phasing in general is used more and more. In particular, Dragonblight contains the first use of permanent phasing. After a quest, one area of the world is permanently changed. This is very interesting, and I'm looking forward to seeing what Blizzard does when they become comfortable with this technology.

Sacred Shield is really nice for Ret soloing. It doesn't seem to improve with Sheath of Light, but the extra crit chance on FoL means you can keep Sheathed FoLs ticking on you all the time. Sacred Shield -> Art of War -> Instant critical FoL with ticking Sheath HoT. It's very useful for soloing elites. Plus even 500 damage reduction is nothing to sneeze at in solo content.

Two more zones of questing to go, and then I'll have to figure out what to do for endgame. I also have an odd desire to go Holy and heal some instances. Retribution is fun for soloing, but it's sort of boring in instances.


  1. Hopefully this won't ruin anything...

    Phasing in Dragonblight is pitiful compared to what it does in Icecrown.

  2. Might I suggest giving Prot a try? Once you figure it out, there is no downtime and you basically feel like you are invincible. DPS is good enough that you don't feel like your fighting an uphill battle with every mob, and you can easily take 7-10 melee without batting an eyelash. Since this getting ShoR and Divine Plea, I have a new found respect for Prot and the fun you can have with it.

    Although, Ret does make things asplode, which is always fun :P

  3. I wouldn't say that the phasing is Dragonblight is pitiful.... merely that it is extremely subtle compared to the sweeping changes in Icecrown.

    My progression path has been Howling Fjord -> Dragonblight -> Grizzly Hills -> Icecrown. I skipped the middle zones because I have some pressure to get to 80 to begin raiding, and leveling is silly-fast in Icecrown.

    Thankfully the story-telling is AMAZING, and the use of phasing is nothing short of phenomenal. You'll love the zone when you decide to venture there.

  4. yes, agree, ret is fun while soloing but much less interesting in an instance, definitely thinking of going back to holy when I get to 80

    Andrew (Aizell)

  5. Yeah I raced to 80 for naxx and i've found myself sitting in naxx wishing I was questing to find out what is happening in the stories i'm 1/2 through. Blizzard did a good job. They have crazy plot, writing, art design people. I just wish they could do math as well as they create content.

    I was sitting around with some IRL friends that play WoW and we got to talking about how bad blizzard is at theory crafting compared to "world creation" type stuff.

  6. I have to agree with the comments above about Icecrown. The use of phasing is so amazing, as well as the story lines.

    Also, I really enjoyed the story line from Grizzly Hills into Zul'Drak. Very well done.

  7. @Dradis,

    You speak of protection dishing out good dps. Funfact: ShoR (rank2) does not trigger the cool down for the ShoR (rank 1), and visa versa. My protadin is putting out amazing single, and muilti target dps because of this.

  8. I still havent finished questing in Grizzly Hills. I'm somewhere around 40-50/75 Quest completed for the achievement.

    I left Grizzly hills for Sholazar Basin as soon as I ding 77.

    Icecrown does have alot of phasing the transition is also superb so you won't go huh? at the end.

    I'm slowly completing the quests for the zones I left after dinging 80. Should be good cash at the same time I don't wanna miss out on any hidden epic quest line out there.

  9. /agree Dradis: I converted to prot at 75 - ShoR made ALL the difference in the world (tried prot briefly at 72-73 and hated it).

    For the phasing thing - I love this concept, and it has made questing so much more interesting. But it bring a question into my mind (using Dragonblight as an example, since most have probably been there by this point): Do those who have not completed the "phasing" quest potentially see players who have completed it sitting amongst hostile mobs but not getting attacked (which would be inexplicible from the yet-to-be-completed's point of view)?

  10. Orgauth,

    The phasing works for players too ie. people in later phases cannot see people in earlier phases and vice-versa. In effect it makes several small-scale "instances" where only people on the same stage of the questline can interact.