Mount Reputation Grinding, Age of Crossdressing


Me and my wife LOVE old RPGs. I can’t count the amount of hours that we each played Baldur’s Gate (we didn’t even know each other at this point in out lives), or Neverwinter Nights. It’s no surprise then that we love Dragon Age. We believe that it is the best RPG to come out since Baldur’s Gate. Sadly we had to wait until last week to pickup the expansion pack, Awakenings. We each bought a copy of Dragon Age when it came out, but we just bought one of the expansion so I’m waiting until she finishes it to jump in and play.

Meanwhile I’ve got some time on my hands and I’m continuing to play World of Warcraft, and trying out some new and some old games. In WoW I’ve spent countless hours now running around and doing low level quests all over Azeroth. I now have Orgrimmar exalted and I’ve got wolf mounts!


I’ve also managed to get my Undercity rep up to exalted and I have Skeletal Horses as well! I’ve got some more rep grinding to do though. I’ve JUST gotten revered with Thunder Bluff (I’ll never ride another Kodo anyway) but I am halfway through revered with Silvermoon and Darkspear Trolls, so that is coming along nicely.

I decided, after visiting the Darkmoon Faire yesterday, to try and get all of Azeroth explored. Me being 68 now I wasn’t afraid of anything in Azeroth, so it was more about the time spent. To make it not so dull I decided to cap my XP (don’t want to get too far from my wife, she’ll kill me) and que up for BGs for some PVP fun! About an hour and a half later I realized why the que wasn’t popping. If you cap your XP you are put into a special Capped XP Twink bracket. At level 68 there was very little chance of anyone else capping their character, so I eventually gave up on that.

What got me through all this? Picture in Picture of a sort. Windows Media Center can pull in my Netflix or other internet video, so I made it small and put it as always on top in the top right corner. That is where my buffs go, and honestly I didn’t need to see them at the moment. I spent my time grinding/watching Star Trek The Original Series. I’m almost to season 2.

I also spent some time playing Age of Conan’s free endless trial. I’m kind of upset that I’m playing a plate/heavy armor wearing tank and so far I’ve got out of my cloth pirate look and only gotten into….this:


It’s fun to stay at the Y M C A

I know you generally look stupid as you level, and at least it’s matching, but when I pick a heavy armor wearing class I want to see SOMETHING resembling metal! I’m sure it’s just because Tortage is kind of a “generic” area and I wouldn’t be surprised if I didn’t get out of cloth type armor until I make it out Tortage. I just really wish skirts weren’t all the rage.

Where to go from here?


As I posted earlier my Prot Pally made it to Outland. He is now level 63 and I’ve gone through Ramparts, Blood Furnace and Slave Pens. I can say for sure that they made those instances easier, especially the final boss of Ramparts. Back when Burning Crusade first came out I remember pug groups wiping dozens of times on him until they gave up. If you stood in the dragons fire for more than two seconds or so you were dead, didn’t matter if you were healer, tank or DPS. Add to that the fact that it is really two bosses, and you have no drinking or eating time between the last trash pull and the boss, and it used to be harder to do that at the appropriate level that it was to do some Heroic Dungeons later on.

Now though I don’t even move out of the fire. Neither does my wife. We kill both bosses easily and her renew keeps anyone in the fire at full health. Let’s be clear though, I don’t think that this change is a bad thing. The simple fact was that very few pugs of the right level beat that boss. Like the Crystal Entity in Star Trek Online it simply requires far too much coordination to expect out of a pug group. Content like that is great for heroics or level cap dungeons or raids, but let’s keep the insta-death stuff out of the lowbie pug area.


On another note I got my Death Knight’s Mining and Herbalism to 300 by traveling all over Azeroth. My Death Knight is basically my bank alt, since he starts with nice bags and some money, plus an epic mount. I’m also using him to help out my Pally, who is Blacksmithing/Enchanting. One of us HAD to go enchanting since we were running all these instances, so I did. The wife went Jewelcrafting/Mining but I don’t like to take her ore.

On  a final note my “free month” for both EverQuest II and Fallen Earth are up and I’ve got some decisions to make. Out of those two I would probably still with Fallen Earth, but those are not the only two options. I already own Age of Conan and I’m thinking about resubbing for a month just to see how far it’s come and if it’s for me. I’m playing through the endless Tortage trial now to see if I even feel like coming back. The graphics of the world are still as amazing as I remember, but at least for me the character textures seem…poor. Especially where the neck meets the body.

Of course there is also Vanguard (Now available through Steam) though I would have to buy that one before I could play it. Finally (and the one I’m leaning more toward) is DarkFall. I had a blast during my two week welcome back period and I’ve really missed the whole “skill based” system. I’m not a fool though. I know there are “levels” whether the game wants to call them that or not. You cannot really help as a newbie. Sure you can be a distraction, but I could do that in WoW at level 1 if I wanted, doesn’t mean it’s really participating. I’d have a several month grind until I could really enjoy the game as intended, but they are changing the health and a few other things soon that would help that.

At the moment I am leading toward DarkFall, but nothing is set in stone. I’ll finish Tortage at least once and then figure out what I want to do. Wish me luck.

Blogger Interrupted


I just wanted to do a quick response to some of the blog’s I’ve been reading recently. First up is Alex Taldren who posted a clip of The Secret World gameplay and complained that it looked like Age of Conan and said that even though the combat looked like Hellgate: London or Fallen Earth, it was still better than most MMO combat.

I remember when Age of Conan first came out and we were all drooling over the graphics and how amazing they were for an MMO. I recently picked up the trial to see how things had changed and it STILL looks amazing, one of the best looking MMOs on the market. When did this become a bad thing? Do we really need to improve on the graphics with every game at the cost of stability, gameplay and fun? Can’t we stick with a nice level of graphics and just improve the game for a while?

The other point from his post I wanted to get into is the complaints I hear, not just from him but from most bloggers, about the boring MMO combat system. There are a few others but for the most part MMOs all control like World of Warcraft. Everyone seems to be complaining about this. The problem I have is that the people complaining aren’t offering up any alternatives. Of course these alternatives would have to be something that wouldn’t alienate too many people, which is the problem with adding FPS mechanics into an MMO. What other control schemes are out there? You want a Fable control scheme? It’s out there already, and it’s pretty much WoW without the action bar.

To me it seems like these same people could play a First Person Shooter and complain about the First Person Shooter combat. If it’s not your cup of tea I’m sorry but maybe it’s not for you. Maybe I’ve got all this wrong though and people have a good idea of what they want. I can’t imagine it’s the Darkfall style combat though as that basically takes the Morrowind/Oblivion combat style, which EVERYONE agreed was the worst part about those games.

The second blog post I want to comment on is Player vs. Developer’s post on Dungeons and Dragons Online: Eberron Unleashed and it’s cash shop. He argues that a poor exchange rate (unless you buy the most expensive iteration of points) is a barrier to entry. I would simply argue that he is looking at it the wrong way. The normal amount of points here is the bottom rate, $6.50 for 420 points. If you are willing to spend more you get more for your dollar as a thank you. It’s not that they are gimping your spending if you don’t spend much, they are just rewarding you if you spend more, which is exactly what a cash shop SHOULD do. Make me WANT to spend $50 at the cash shop and you know what, if I only want to spend EXACTLY enough to buy a new race or class, I can do that too.

The last blog I’d like to address is Hardcore Casual and it’s post on FFA vs. Faction based PVP. I’d have to say that while I prefer faction based PVP for the stability and security to be “safe” sometimes, I might change my tune if there was a FFA game I could try that did not have full loot rules. Maybe it’s out there and I just haven’t found it yet, but the full loot really kills a game for me. I know it shouldn’t but I haven’t been able to get into it since Ultima Online, and I could enjoy it in that game because the community policed themselves, literally you have guilds that acted as police and protection for miners or lumberjacks and wondered the woods killing any PKers. Now days everyone just wants to grief and I don’t enjoy being griefed. More power to those who do I guess.

This post turned out to be longer than I wanted it to be, but I just had to respond to a few things.