The 80 Blues

I just realized that another good friend of mine hit 80 while I was nixxed from playing wow.

Another real life friend of mine thinks I’d enjoy raiding and even be good at it. She’s also in one of the better Horde guilds on my horde server. Not a guild I’d mind being in.

My Mom still doesn’t have an 80 but she’s much closer Alliance side than Horde. I also haven’t really had much if any contact with poeple I enjoyed playing with on my Alliance server.

At this point I don’t plan on quitting wow again any time soon. I’d really like to hit the level cap, see what the end game is like and find a guild home. I’d also like to get as much of this accomplished as possible before Cataclism lands.

I didn’t think I’d ever want to be a raider, but I would at least like to give it a try so that I can close the book on it.

The downside is that my DK won’t have the same role flexibility that my paladin has. But with only 4 levels left to 80 I really just want to say f it and just level her anyway.

Mostly though I am worried that I will have leveled my DK and no one will have a need for one. Better yet that I’ll suck at raiding as a DK because I won’t get my rotations right or get the right gear/enchants/buff foods etc.

Then again maybe I’m overthinking this. If I do the research when I get where I’m going I’ll be fine. And if not, well that will tell me everything I need to know.

WoW Dual Wield Death Knight

I’ve notice that some folks have been landing here looking for info on Death Knight Dual Wielding. I still love the concept of Dual Wielding DK’s. It’s awesome to have options and it’s annoying when options are taken away for whatever reason.

For the past few patches I hadn’t seen much that meant Dual Wielding was viable, but that seems to have changed in WoW’s latest patch 3.3. If you take a look at the Elitest Jerks forum there’s a Dual Wield tanking build posted (Link).  There’s also a couple of Dual Wielding DPS builds over at Skeleton Jack’s blog (Link).

Oh and I forgot to add, keep in mind that these builds are viable in the latest patch as of this post which is currently 3.3. That means no promises on what’ll happen in the next patch etc.

Goodby Jack?

Skeleton Jack is leaving WoW. I mean while I don't want to believe it, I can. If you're a determined person, WoW can get pretty overwhelming. His blog was always entertaining and informative, even the posts I got a chance to help out on.

I really hope that things work out for him and that he gets some serious writing in. 😀

Best of Luck Jack, wherever life takes you.

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Death Knight Follow UP

Ok so I’ve been getting comments on my post “Death Knights: Dual Wielding DPS Specs” (Link) and I wanted to follow up on that post.

So out of all of the specs listed in that post the 0/33/38 spec did the most damage out of the builds tested. I’m not going to rehash what was said there. I will though mention that folks in the PTR are letting on that this build will not do as much damage once 3.1 lands due to revisions in the Death Knight talent tree that move things around. Those changes aren’t final yet and there’s a lot of testing going on, but as of this post Dual Wielding DPS works fine in 3.0, but in 3.1 don’t expect to see the same damage.

WotLK Newbs: 80’s to the left, thier alts to the right, and me in the middle as a newb…

Ok so my blog has been pretty, well, squishy so far. Lately though I’ve noticed that there’s a real lack of content for a whole set of folks playing WoW, the Post WotLK Newbs. Why should I write for these folks? I mean is being a newb now really any different than it was to be a newb in BC or in Vanilla WoW? Actually yeah.. it is.

So in Vanilla WoW, life was different for Newbs. I didn’t get a chance to play WoW during the vanilla WoW days, but I know a lot of folks who have. I’ve listened to their stories and I’ve gotta say that the game was a lot different for folks just starting out back in those days than it is now. There was only one ‘world’, there were only 60 levels to the level cap, there were more folks to group with at lower levels, and Auction House prices were a little more reasonable (for the most part).

Now fast forward to the Burning Crusade expansion. Everyone runs for level 70. The Burning Crusade adds two new elements to the game Dailies and Heroics. These are two great new features that give players something to do aside from raiding and PvP once they get up to 70. There’s also a lot of gold to be had in them there Outlands! With shiny new gear and all this new content, folks pretty much abandoned the old world for the Outlands and never looked back. Sure they’d level an alt once in a while, but why go through all that grind when you can just hang out in Shattrah City and show off all your awesome new gear and yep a flying mount!! For folks that started the game post Burning Crusade, you now had 70 levels to catch up on, an inflated server economy because people would rather spend gold than have their main set foot in the old world, and aside from Barrens Chat, the Old World seemed bleak and empty.

This is where I entered WoW. I spent a lot of time questing solo and since I was solo leveling a Priest, I’m really surprised that I didn’t quit the game all together. I did make friends when I first started out. In fact my first 5 minutes in the game I made my first WoW friend ever who invited me over to the Horde side. Once on the Horde side I found another friend that I ran with for a few months. Once my real life friend found out I was playing she let me know which server she was on and I re-rolled a priest to compliment her hubby’s Warrior and her Mage. My buddy followed me over and rolled a warrior, but these two classes were just so annoying to level that we just eventually gave up. I quit the game for a while and he went back to his old server. When I got back to the game I got back to leveling that Priest, this time solo of course. It wasn’t fast leveling that’s for sure and it took a lot of strategy to complete quests without spending most of my playtime in the graveyard. My friend and her hubby helped me out and chatted with me when they were online, but they were almost to 70 so I didn’t see them very often since they were leveling in the Outlands. There was also only one way to get in and out of the Outlands making it a bit of a hassle for higher level folks to get back into the old world. Since there was so much to do at level 70, there weren’t a whole lot of folks rolling alts and since I started between expansions, there also weren’t a whole lot of folks starting up the game for the first time, so the old world was pretty lonely. Actually once I even made it up to the Outlands, they were pretty empty as well.

In rolls WotLK. So many sweet new features, more accessible end game content, new dailies, new flying mounts, achievements, it’s almost a whole new game. Now all of the folks who were 70 rushed up the 10 levels to get to 80. They whined a bit, but once they got there they were gearing up for end game content, doing more dailies, leveling trade skills, whining about being bored in the new Shattrah, Dalaran. Blizz did make it a little easier to get in and out of Northrend, but there’s so much to do out there, why go back to the Outlands, and so many of those folks spent so much time on the old world content that they aren’t going back, well unless they need to hit the auction house of course.

I’m feeling for folks who are starting to play WoW now, or started playing around the time the expansion hit. Now it seems like things are even more expensive since there seems to be even more gold in the new continent. Leveling has been toned down so it’s faster to get to 80, but there’s two problems with that. First off trade skills are problematic because chances are you’ll level out of a zone before you gather enough materials to get your trade skills high enough for the next zone. Less quests are required to get to the next level while that means dealing with fewer of the ‘get 50 ears for Zul’tan’ style quests, it also means less coin. This can make it a lot harder to pay for class training, travel, and mounts (training and the mount). It also makes it easier to skip group quests. If you can get the xp elsewhere and it’s too much of a pain to get a group together, why bother finishing those quests? Problem is that grouping for dungeons is a great way to learn how the skills of one class work with the other classes to take down the bosses. Without this experience there’s a ton of people that are getting up into the end game content and basically doing all the same things they’d do while they were running solo. That just doesn’t work and ends up leading to a string of wipes and a lot of wasted time (ok granted there’s probably also a lot of folks that just didn’t have the patience to get ready for and raid in the BC expansion that are now running amok in WotLK and making us all look bad).

So safe to say WoW is slowly becoming a game that’s really unfriendly to new players. Yeah the recruit a friend program is really helpful, in that it gets you to the level cap faster, but think of all the content that’s getting passed up on the way to 80.

Back to the Death Knight

I can’t really explain just how much I missed being a Death Knight. For me it’s not the power, it’s not the name, it’s just the underlying creepiness of the class as a whole.

If you can’t tell by the name of the blog, I’m a fan of creepy.

Gesitig is practically a poster child for creepy and I’m loving it. Running around, slicing mobs in half, just a gal and her ghoul. Life is good.

So Azmim was questing in Stranglethorn Vale so I figured I’d help her out. She’s a Priest so she just attracts trouble, I mean lets face it, mobs will walk through walls to get at a Priest. While out there killing the piraty lads, I felt bad as we were about to start killing in the same direction as a Troll Hunter out that was out questing himself.

Since I could take on the whole beach all on my lonesome (with the help of my ghoul of course) I figured it was time to earn some Karma points and ask if the Hunter wanted to join Azmim and I so he’d get credit for the kills as opposed to angrily waiting on re-pops.

Surprisingly enough the Troll Hunter was actually ok to run with. He tried to take stuff out along with me and Azmim and I helped him out on a couple other quests as well. He even ran back to give Azmim a hand after she made a few friends… Which is code for “uh oh the Priest has aggro”.

It’s kind of weird to be back on Uldum for a matter of hours and I’m adding someone to my friends list. Can’t say it’s going to be like that every day but who knows.

I also know that I need to do a little leveling with Geistig, she’s 75% to 73. Ah only 7 levels away from 80. My that’s refreshing hehe. I know they’ll be slow going, but it takes a load off.

Oh and on a PTR note I’ve been reading about the Dual Wielding nerf coming up in patch 3.1. Well it’s not surprising that Blizz wants to nerf it, I just don’t get why they give us the option to do so and then hamstring it. Seems pretty weird to me and I know weird, trust me. I really only had time to test out a Frost spec and an Unholy Spec. I also haven’t glyped Gestig very well, nor is she level 80 so the picture I gathered is by far not a glowing example.

I can say that out of the two trees though, the Frost tree was getting consistently higher numbers per hit when Dual Wielding than the Unholy spec. The numbers weren’t consistent though with what I was seeing when I switched over to a two hander. Bleaaarg. Seriously, I just don’t get why people insist on shredding my favorite things. Oh well. Hopefully I’ll get a chance to get Geistig up to 80 and test out the uber DPS Unholy/Frost spec before the patch. After the patch, well I’m gonna have a LOT of research to do to make Dual Wielding viable let alone competitive.

There’s some folks that are worried that Death Knights will get not only get taken down a notch, but well several notches. Honestly, I’m not too worried if Blizz beats Death Knights black and blue with the nerf bat. I will probably still play a Death Knight, I just love the class. Then again I like all of the more fringe classes, Shamans, Shadow Priests, Affliction Warlocks, all of the class and talent combinations that are pretty well frowned upon at end game. Or well used to be, now Shamans and Shadow Priests are doing pretty darned well. In the end though no one really knows what’s going to happen until it does so I’m not going to sweat it. I’m just going to have fun and maybe put my two cents in once in a while.


Death Knight: Dual Wielding DPS Specs

**Note**  WoW has changed a lot since January 2008, Check the Elitist Jerks DK forum and Skeleton Jack blog posts for the latest info on Dual Wielding DK specs.


Ok so I’m still reading up on Dual Wielding Death Knights. Sure the general consensus is that they’re an abomination to the the lore and shouldn’t be allowed in the game at all, but yeah, I’m not one to go with the general consensus anyway so I keep reading. While My focus currently is on my Rogue, my Death Knight Dual Wielding days are far from over and once I can allocate full time back to it I will.  For now though I’m trying to keep up with the changes so that when I’m ready to go I’ll be able to pick up where I left off and get some serious damage in, hehe.

As promised Skeleton Jack (Link) came through with some Dual Wielding DPS specs for this post patch 3.0.8 World of Warcraft (hehe). So far he has 3 Dual Wielding talent specs up. Two of these are tested for around 5000 boss damage and the last is actually still the champion from pre patch 3.0.8 the 0/33/38 Dual Wielding spec (plus Gargoyle).

In the 5000 plus range it looks like both specs are heavy in the Unholy Tree to take advantage of some Unholy talents that are not weapon dependent. Remember, the fact that a lot of the Death Knight abilities only add to the amount of damage that their weapon does. So that’s been one of the burdens of Dual Wielding is working with a spec that doesn’t rely so heavily on the abilities that only boost weapon damage, and instead focusing on abilities that destroy stuff regardless of a Death Knight’s weapon.

The first 5000 plus spec listed 10/10/51 kind of goes back to the old “Dual Wielding Tri-Spec” sort of Talent allocation, by hitting the first two talent tiers in the blood tree and the Frost tree to augment weapon damage. Then this talent tree dives into the Unholy talents to add some non weapon dependant DPS talents like Gargoyle and Unholy Blight.

The second 5000 plus spec listed is 0/20/51, which is a little frostier than the previous build (pardon the pun). This build still relies heavily on the Unholy tree, but instead of only allocating talents in the first two tiers of both the Blood and Frost talent trees, this build focuses all 20 points in the Frost tree. Really this buffs Icy Touch to give a Dual Wielding Death Knight a nice non weapon reliant and bursty source of DPS.

In the 6000 plus range though we have the reigning champion Dual Wield DPS build of 0/33/38. This build does stray from the first two by moving 13 talent points out of the Unholy talent tree and swapping them over to the Frost tree. Why do this? Well because you’re able to get Howling blast and pump up the damage that Howling Blast and Icy Touch do via this talent tree. Howling Blast is another talent that isn’t weapon dependant so the amount of damage it can do is based on your talents and training, not on how hard your weapons can hit. Then this talent spec dives into the Unholy tree to grab a few more talents to boost weapon damage and adds non weapon based DPS via pet damage through Summon Gargoyle and Master of Ghouls. The one thing I also like about this spec is that it spends a whole talent point on Bone Shield which is a handy talent point for minimizing damage taken on during the fight. Let’s face it as DPS we’re not on the healer’s priority list. Since dead DPS does no damage, a little self preservation goes a long way.

What a Knight: Feeling Awful and the Gurubashi Arena

Well there’s no leveling to report from yesterday’s short login session. I actually spent a large part of the day recovering from a tenacious cold so I wasn’t really up for much WoW time last night. For the most part I logged in on Auslander to chat a bit with my guildies and Talta, you know just sort of hanging out. It turns out that Talta was up for a little help with a few quests and she needed to make a couple of stops to visit Nat Pagel and the infamous ‘Tabetha’ out in Dustwallow marsh.

Well the Dustwallow marsh visits weren’t much to talk about, except for beating mobs off of Talta a few times. After we finish those it was off to Stranglethorn Vale to kill some Kurzens and take care of a little Troll problem that Talta was having.  So running Talta through the Kurzen cave I realized that I wasn’t a) keeping mobs off of Talta as well as I’d like to, and that b) I was getting exausted pretty fast. I wanted to help her out with the trolls though, so once we finished up at the caves I logged over to Teufeltanze (my Death Knight) to help Talta complete those quests. It took me a bit to get Teufeltanz from the Outlands to Stranglethorn Vale, but wow was it worth it. Things went quite a bit faster and I was able to keep the trolls interested in me while Talta blasted them. It was good.

As we finished things up a Hordie Death Knight rode up and started picking on Talta. /oy The Death Knight was of course a level 80 and would have eaten me alive. So I wait until Talta has mounted up and moved on and I do the same. Then I type into Guild chat that I can’t believe how many high level Hordies that I’m running into down here. Gryffn, one of our younger and wiser guild members says that it’s probably because the Gurubashi Arena event is about to spawn. The Gurubashi Arena is a no holds barred event where folks in both factions and even folks in the same faction, compete for the chance to open a chest that spawns in the middle of the arena.

Upon hearing this, one of our newer members a level 80 Druid that goes by Hidinghunter decided that he wanted to participate and made his way to the arena. I’d just finished up with Talta and agreed to provide what little back up support I could with my just hit 60 overnight Death Knight. Even equipped with all blue gear and Hellreaver, I still felt like I was signing my own death warrant. Not to mention how much it’s gonna cost to repair my gear. Just as I added Hidinghunter to the group and started rushing from Northern Stranglethorn toward the Gurubashi arena, the event NPC yells out that it’s go time.

I’m watching Hidinghunter’s health bar and his image changing from elf to bear. Riding as fast as I can I finally make it into the arena. I charge in despawning my mount and rushing across the platform to the arena pit I see a Death Knight with an army of undead following him. I mouse over and sure enough it’s a fellow Guild member Saur! I jump into the fray and start blasting on a Tauren Druid in bear form who’s intent on going after Hidinghunter. I get an Icy Touch and Howling Blast off before I’m two shotted by the Druid, but hey I got a few shots in and changed his focus long enough for Hidinghunter and Saur to do some real damage. I corpse run back from the graveyard to repeat the process, I was killed a few times but the level 80 Undead Rogue and the level 80 Tauren Druid were really giving us a run for the chest. I was pretty stoked though because once I even managed to lay the fatal blow on the Rogue with a Howling Blast, hehe.

Eventually the Arena was empty and only Aftermath prevailed. Saur, Hidinghunter and myself were the last three standing in the arena. They both yelled “Get it!”. So I ran up and started opening the chest. Yeah this chest takes friggin forever to open. I see red flashes all around me and I just know that a Rogue is about to try something. Sure enough a Dwarf Rogue pops out of stealth and interrupts me. Just for that I destroyed him without remorse and went back to opening the chest. Now I’m thinking to myself, crap those level 80 Hordie are probably going to pop over here and pound me as I’m just standing here dinking with a friggin chest!

Then all of a sudden… boom… the chest opens, I get the achievement and loot filters into my bags!

Yep one of the coolest moments ever. Would I have been able to do it on my own? NO WAY! If Saur and Hidinghunter weren’t there I’d have spent the bulk of my time dead! Ok, not that I didnt’ spend a bunch of it dead as it was, but I wouldn’t have made it to the chest that’s for sure. But this is just what this guild is like. It’s pretty awesome!

Well gotta go and get some stuff done for the day, until next time!

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Busy Night: Rogue hits 52, Death Night Hits 60, and Priest hits 69

Yeah another one of those ‘just can’t sleep for some reason nights’. So I just play a little WoW. (for the record, I did get some sleep, just not a lot). Auslander is still leveling pretty quick and yeah she is still my Main (and main focus). So far she’s been ripping through mobs like it’s nobody’s business and knocking quests out left and right. Hitting 52 puts her only 6 levels away from running to the outlands and things should move a little faster once I get there.

Since the Patch landed and a fellow guildie had said that leveling Shadow just wasn’t working for him (it’s not for everyone), I thought to myself, well, Strategeist is on Rexxar now, why not spec her back to Shadow and see how she fares. It took me a little bit to get a solid rotation down, but once I did, Strategiest was actually performing pretty well. Dispersion doesn’t work quite as well as I remember, but the + damage talents in the shadow tree really help get a little extra health back on Vampiric Embrace. While Vampiric Touch only helps so much, Improved Spirit Tap really made the difference between sitting and drinking after each pull and throwing on a hot while running after the next critter. Also, having Holy Nova makes a huge difference on multiple mobs.

So after goofing off with Strategeist for a bit I tried going to bed and getting some sleep. Yeah it wasn’t working so I figured I’d get up and read a blog or two until I was tired enough to actually get some sleep. This of course lead me to wonder just what my Human Death Knight would be able to do once she’s geard up for Dual Wielding. I also realizes that she still didn’t have a guild tabard. So I figured I’d log on for a minute or two and get my Death Knight a guild tabard (and a change of hairstyle, her original one just wasn’t working for her). Next thing I know I’m running though Hellfire Citadel with some late night guildies. The weirdest part is that HellReaver dropped on the second run through. I’ve been through Hellfire Citadel more times than I care to remember and I’ve never seen this weapon drop! On the off chance that I’m unable to sleep, logging in to my Death Knight for just a little bit, and ended up finding myself in just the right place at just the right time. That’s wierd. The worst part is that Teufeltanz (the Death Knight) wasn’t really big enough to use it yet. She hit 59 on the first run through Hellfire Citadel, and after a little questing in the Outlands I pushed her up to 60. I had kind of hoped that no one was online when she hit 60. Actively leveling Teufeltanz is not one of my main goals. Really I’m just picking up where I left off with Geistig in my Dual Wielding Death Knight experimentation. Crazy I know, but it’s one of those thinks in WoW right now that isn’t stapled into a required spec for x or y. I guess that really only bugs people that actually read into why/when to use spec x or y, hehe.

Since there’s still a little room to experiment with Death Knight weapons, abilities and specs, it’s kind of fun to be a part of that. But I did sort of want to do that covertly. Really there’s already quite a few Death Knights in the guild. I’d have leveled one already if there’d been a need for one. Really I created Teufeltanz so that I would have a good character for helping make money for my new characters on Rexxar, and have a heavy hitting plate wearing character to help out Talta as well. The sad part is that with Teufeltanz hitting 60, it means that she’s the same level as the guys I started running with when I joined the guild. They’re a ton of fun to run with. But I’ve also enjoyed running with the gals I’ve been running with lately since my leveling is dragging along. It’s tempting, it really is. I think I’ll probably level Teufeltanz every once in a while, but for now I’m focused on Auslander.

Rogue Update: Mutilate Respec on Hold

Well last night I respecced Auslander for Mutilate. I grabbed a second dagger off the Auction House and ran out to try the talents. The build is pretty cool and there’s a whole lot of potential there. At 51 however, slow and low damage daggers make it kind of painful. I’ve decided for now to go Combat/Swords instead. Let’s face it, for leveling, doing steady damage and cutting through mobs as fast as possible means quests are completed faster, xp is picked up faster and the Rogue levels faster.

I also noticed that there’s really nothing like Blade Fury in the mutilate tree. This is kind of sad. Why? Well Blade Fury throws damage out on multiple mobs. When I’m in a dungeon or I just end up aggroing more than one mob, I can hit Blade Fury and it starts ticking away at everything I’m wacking around as opposed to just the single target in front of me. Keep in mind I do switch targets to apply poisons and so on, but this just makes things go a little faster. That means I take less damage and that I have less downtime. It also makes taking out the 10 mobs the Paladin tank pulled a little easier to cut through. heh

After the talent point debate, I just felt like I needed a break from the grind and decided to help out a guildy make a low level gear run through Shadow Fang Keep (SFK). To make things faster I figured I’d tap Teufeltanz my Human Death Knight.

Currently she has the beginnings of a Dual Wield spec and I plan on having her start running with dual swords once she can pick up the Alliance level 60 Hellfire Peninsula rep swords. Fresh out of Archerus Hold, she’s still wandering about in her standard issue but still menacing Death Knight regalia complete with the 2 Handed sword. Teufeltanz was also added to the guild last night when I hit accept to a guild invite that I’d thought to be a party invite. So yeah the cat’s out of the bag with my guild that I have a Death Knight. My friend that added Teufeltanz to the guild asked later if I’d intended Tanz to be more of a secret toon, but really I hadn’t asked to add Tanz to the guild because I didn’t want to clog the guild with alts. I guess one alt wouldn’t hurt. I still don’t plan on making Tanz my main at this point, yeah running through SFK (fastest run ever with a 60 Paladin and a 58 Death Knight) I was reminded just how much of a death machine this class really is. That’s kind of hard to walk away from.

In fact I actually ran Tanz out to the Dark Portal and did a couple of quets in the Outlands. What brought home how much I really enjoy rolling Rogue, was that after every mob I wanted to hit Stealth, and realized, crap Death Knights can’t stealth. With Death Knights my weapon selection is also pretty limited. Yeah I know that may not seem like a big deal to most folks, but I really like the fact that Auslander could practically carry an arsenal of weapons. This kind of flexibility makes it a lot easier for me to pick up new weapons that do greater damage as I’m out questing or instancing. When I’m limited on weapon choices, sometimes I just have to hit up the auction house if my toon outgrows their weapon without coming across a decent replacement. Yeah I know this sounds like a weak complaint, but when you’re toon is starting from scratch, every little bit saved makes it a lot easier to pay for training and buy mounts. Otherwise your running around like a kiddie with a sugar high trying to scrounge up the last of the cash needed to pay for this and that. Well that and pick pocketing can bring in some coin too heh.

Yeah it was nice to take a break from the old world grind and feel a little invincible, but it’s back to the Rogue for me, heh.

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