Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Third Year Mark

It's been about three years since I started writing this blog.

I think I'm a lot happier with WoW than I was last year. I've sort of made peace with the whole specialization issue. It's not ideal, but it's okay. It helps a lot that Protection and Retribution are very viable. Going Holy is closer to an actual choice, rather than being forced into it. Have to give Blizzard props for making that happen.

The biggest difference between now and previous years is that I am unguilded. To be honest, it's sort of nice not being in a guild. You log on, and do whatever you feel like. As well, there's something to be said for experiencing content in the proper order. I did every single quest before starting heroics. I haven't done any raids yet. But that means that I don't outgear the content yet. It's kind of nice, seeing a blue drop and realizing it's an upgrade for me rather than pure disenchant fodder. I just got to Revered rep with Wyrmrest today, and picked up multiple upgrades.

It's been really pleasant to have been able to go through the content in order, to consume it at leisure and not be rushed, rather than skipping all over the place. However, I'm coming to the end of what you can do solo and I do miss the experience of working on harder content with a team that sticks together.

I think I'm going to take a vacation from WoW for a few weeks before jumping into raiding, though. Cleanse the palate, if you will.

This past year I also tried some other MMOs. Age of Conan was terrible. Wizard 101 was quite good. If you're at all interested in a different MMO experience, give Wizard 101 a shot. The client and the first few zones are free.

Warhammer Online was decent, but I just couldn't get into it. I actually tried resubscribing a month ago to try the new tank class. Mythic has made some significant improvements. Of the five issues I identified, they've made amazing progress with the responsiveness of combat and polishing of systems like the chat interface. I still couldn't get into any of the classes, but if you were on the fence regarding WAR, you might want to take another look. Of course, I never made it past level 11, so I have no idea what endgame is like.


  1. Not being in a guild is awesome. My old 70s are all still in my raiding guild, and I still have a lot of friends there. But my new druid main is in a guild by herself, and I'm loving it.

    It's a lot of fun to pug raids, though I do sometimes call in my old guildmates if we need more people. I did a full clear of Naxx the other day with a pug. Coming together with people you've never met to fight bosses you've never seen before can feel like a real accomplishment.

    I've got 3/5 tier 7 aleady, after being 80 for two weeks. It's definitely not impossible to raid without a guild.

  2. Yeah, but to me part of the fun of raiding is working through content with the same group of people. Progressively conquering harder and harder challenges. Becoming a better team.

    I could pug Naxx or whatever, but it really isn't the same as learning an instance with a guild. It's missing that "high" of guild-first kills.

    Plus, I expect Uldar to step up the difficulty, and I would like to try some of the hard-mode bosses like Sarth+X. And that kind of stuff is best done with a guild.

  3. Firstly, know that I greatly enjoy your blog and have been reading for quite some time.

    Honestly, though, QQ moar about specialization and "choosing" your role. The choice is in the class for most people. Mages, Warlocks, Rogues, and Hunters don't get (and don't expect) any other options besides DPS roles.

  4. I don't like being unguilded, it makes me feel very alone in a vast world.

    That said, I understand the fun of doing things my own way. My schedule, and motivation to change it, do not fit well with my guild's raiding schedule. So I don't raid except for some VoA PUGs. I did a lot of questing early on, completely finishing every zone except Howling Fjord an Grizzly Hills. It makes everything more fun when there's lore behind the game and when an instance is more than just a source of gear.

    On the subject of gear, I like the feeling of gradual upgrades that I feel that I've earned, but did not expect. In a raid I feel like I should be showered with epics just for showing up. In a heroic, epics are a bonus, they stand out. The blues stand on their own and offer steady increases in stats.

    I enjoy your blog and hope you're still posting next year.

  5. Quick note about WAR, in the December patches, Mythic has added gear rewards for RvR (world PvP) so there is a LOT more RvR going on. This is is a significant improvement imho.

  6. Grats on 3rd year mark! Carry on! I really enjoy reading your blog.

  7. I guess there is a lot to be said for being guildless, aye. Personally I'm happy in a guild that has zero requirements yet manages to clear raid content - it's sort of a friends and friends of friends only thing.

    That said, guilded, you will always have to abide by certain unwritten laws etc etc. And as an officer, well.. I both envy you and I don't, I guess.

    One question - are you going to seek to join a guild when you want to raid, or are you counting on pugs? The competence level of pugs seems to be very high nowadays.

  8. Personally, I feel very lonely when I'm guildless, but luckily I'm in a very light guild with few requirements, so we are clearing content very gradually.

  9. Honestly, though, QQ moar about specialization and "choosing" your role. The choice is in the class for most people. Mages, Warlocks, Rogues, and Hunters don't get (and don't expect) any other options besides DPS roles.

    Exactly, Phog. When I rolled a paladin, we weren't in the trinity. I didn't expect to be playing a Healer, a DPS, or a Tank. I expected to be playing a paladin. The shattering of the paladin into the three roles came a long time after I first started playing.

    Read some of my very first posts that go into more detail on this point.

  10. Congratulations on three years!

    I have always found your writing on paladins to be quite informative, even if I seem to forget everything you wrote the moment I log into the game.

  11. Cogratulations on 3 years! Here's to many more.


  12. Congrats on your three years! :)

    I find it relaxing to not be in a guild sometimes. I'm an officer in my main's, but I have an alt on another server that is for all intents and purposes guildless and it's nice being able to log in an not be hit up for an instance or just bask in how quiet chat is.

  13. Gratz on 3 years! A toast for more years to come!

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  15. Gratz on three years of maintaining a great blog! Well deserved.

  16. best paladin blog I've found by far, good variety of topics, at all different levels of analysis, with well structured discussion.

    even if I don't always agree with you


  17. Congrats on three years, Coriel! It takes a lot of dedication and attention to keep a blog running that long, particularly one as thoughtful as yours. My hat's off to you! :)