My pugging mage went through RFK this weekend, and I’ll post the write-up in the next couple days!
I also spent some time leveling my frost mage in the Hinterlands and Un’Goro, and she finished off some of the easy stuff in Tanaris as well. I also sent her to Azshara to do the series of quests with the tablets. It’s really easy experience, given that it just requires a bit of running around. (With my mage being able to portal to capital cities, it was even faster to run the circuit!)
My frost mage also ran Sunken Temple with a pug that was basically a time bomb of wiping, though somehow, we never wiped despite the loud ticking. We had the stereotypical “rouge,” who was far more interested in stealthing around and exploring than staying with the group. Half the time, she wasn’t even on my minimap, which is zoomed out to the max. The pulls were unmarked, chaotic, a series of scrapes that seemed to get closer and closer. I stayed alive because I basically stood there waiting to figure out which mob was taking the most damage before I started casting. My dps was the highest of the group, but I felt dreadfully inefficient. I suggested marking several times, but nobody acknowledged it. I did pick up the Vestments of the Atal’ai Prophet and some good xp, so I suppose it was worth it. (Cleared my quest log a bit, too.) My frost mage is at 54 now. Hey, almost Outland time for her, too!
After the Sunken Temple run, my mage popped back into the LFG and heard a call for a healer for Maraudon. Ooh! I switched over to my level 48 priest, sent a tell to the leader, and they invited me to the group. I haven’t played my priest in so long that it took a little while to get my groove. It was a total blast to heal again, though there was a mage in the group that made the job quite challenging. First problem was that he started casting and many times got a fireball lobbed at the enemy before the tank even got to it. He drew aggro on most pulls. Competing with him for aggro was a hunter that would start shooting and send his pet in (growl on), again before the tank got a few swings in. Initially, I spent all my time healing the two of them and didn’t have to heal the tank at all. It was ridiculous. Given that I wasn’t playing my “hands-off” pug mage, I decided to make some suggestions… 🙂
At first, the mage didn’t get it. He still kept casting right away. So, between each pull, I’d patiently explain again that he and the hunter should let the tank get a few swings in before they started firing. If the mob came running right at them immediately, they didn’t wait long enough. Finally, we had a pull that went like it should. The tank ran in, the off-tank ran in, the dps then started firing, and all the mobs stayed a safe distance away from them. I only had to heal the main and off tank. Hurrah!
Things continued to go smoothly until we got to the point where some AoE was in order. I think it was the room with all the maggots. The mage said that in another party, they let him gather up a bunch of them and AoE and it was “so fun.” So, I bubbled him, he ran in, and started blasting away. This was all good, except I think he got used to the idea that I’d keep him alive whenever he felt like going into AoE mode. Like in regular pulls. He started drawing a lot of aggro again, now with his prancing around, popping arcane explosions all over the place. Argh. What’s worse is that when the mobs burst through the bubble protecting him, he’d run away! So, I reminded him to run toward the tank if he got into trouble, and also suggested that when he drew aggro, he should stop with the AoE and let the mobs refocus on the tank. “But the AoE kills them,” he said. “It’s going to kill you, too,” I said. I told him my focus was going to be healing the tank and myself, so he should keep that in mind. I did let him die a few times after that when I possibly could have saved him, I confess. He died a few times when I couldn’t save him either. Mages just don’t have the hit points to survive attacks by multiple elites several levels above them.
We got to the center of Mara, got the staff for the portal, and then the hunter had to go, so the mage portaled us all to Thunder Bluff to empty our bags, make repairs, and pop into the LFG again. Almost immediately we picked up a second priest. They were higher level than I, so I was worried for a moment I’d be reassigned to DPS, but it turned out they were shadow. Sweet.
This shadow priest seemed to know what the heck they were doing. Ample use of vampiric embrace kept everyone’s health topped off, too. It made the whole group run more smoothly, since they knew how to control their aggro. I know I mostly complained about the mage, but I don’t think that hunter knew what he was doing either. He ran out of bullets and food for his pet during the run, and his pet’s dps was like 5. (Not kidding.) I suspect they hadn’t trained the pet at all. The shadow priest’s dps was… um, more. We downed all the bosses with no problem. I came away with the Chloromesh Girdle, but the remaining blue drops were all plate, so the lone warrior in the group came away with a shiny new outfit. 🙂
I also briefly sent my priest into Arathi Basin. She was at 49, and I wanted to see what it was like to play when you’re at the higher end of the level range. Brief reflections on the experience…
– Being a priest in the BGs is a thankless job. You are a big target, obviously, so you die a lot. After healing someone, rather than “nice heals,” I heard, “fort buff plz.” DPS in the BGs is more fun.
– The novelty of Arathi Basin has worn off, and now I’m more often frustrated with my teammates than having fun. I’m not acting like a baby, but I find myself saying, “Hey guys, why don’t we protect the nodes we capture?” I’m brand new to the BGs, but to some of the teams I played with, this was a revolutionary idea. Their strategy was capture and move on to the next node, leaving the last one undefended. Morons. I know protecting the flag is boring, but having a rogue sneak up and retake it a few seconds after you walk away is just annoying. As a priest, there was only so much flag protection I could do by myself.
At the end of the night last night, I decided to give a different BG a try: Alterac Valley. I sent my frost mage in, and boy-oh-boy, that is a different kind of BG.
I did read about it beforehand, but like the others, it’s hard to know what to expect (or even what to do, really) in AV until you actually go in there. It is a huge BG, I’d no idea where anything was, so I just tried to hang with the group, follow the crowds, and pick off as many Alliance as I could.
I did AV five times total. The Horde lost the first three matches. This was a little surprising, given all the “Horde always wins AV” stuff I’ve been hearing lately. At the end of the first run, someone kept saying, “see that’s why you don’t skip Bal.” At the beginning of the second game, someone said, “GET BAL FIRST.” Heheh…. perhaps they were on my team before? It still didn’t help.
The fourth run of AV took almost an hour, but the Horde won. It was really super-fun. Lots of huge battles, 15-20 of us against a mass of Alliance coming up the road. I could never see the appeal of a game like Warhammer Online until now. I went in for another run right away, and it took about 30 minutes or so before the Horde won. Sweet sweet victory.
I’ve created a Night Elf priest over on Drenden, but haven’t played her much yet. I almost rolled a warlock, since it’s the only class I don’t have represented amongst the Horde characters in my main realm, but given that it means I could only be human or gnome… hrm…. not so sure about that one. 😉
Wow, that’s a long post. More later, if I think of anything…