gaming, Player perspective, Questing, Warcraft, Warcraft characters, Warcraft Hunters, Warcraft Writing

Trekking with Calador

My night elf hunter Calador in mid-shoot.

A while back I did a world quest on my druid, Daxien, that required him to shoot a bow. Believe it or not, that was the first time I’d really seen how a male night elf shoots a bow. Sure, I’ve seen lots of male night elves as both allies and enemies, but I never really watched them shoot. However, the moment I saw Daxien shoot, I fell in love with the action and decided I needed to make a male night elf hunter.

More awesome arrow nocking action.

I promptly went into one of my realms and created my new night elf hunter. I’d had female night elf hunters before (now deleted) but never a male. I went with a randomized name from the game, Calador, and while he started out with white hair, I eventually changed it to green because it suited him better.

I haven’t leveled a hunter from level one in a rather long time. I have my void elf hunter Valressa, but she started at level 20. So I felt it was going to be fun relearning the hunter spec from the ground up. As I’m a bit too familiar with the night elf starter area, I decided to take Cal to Elwynn Forest and do the quests around there for a while.

As a night elf, Calador started out with a white striped tiger as his pet. I have four cats in real life, so I was quite fine with him having a cat. After a while of playing him though, I decided I’d tame a bear in Elwynn woods for a pet. I always name my hunter pets, and after taming the brown bear, I decided that the name Tiberius suited him.

If you don’t know, Tiberius is the middle name of James T. Kirk, Captain of the Enterprise. Yes, I’m a Star Trek lover as well as a Warcraft lover. I love all sorts of nerdy/geeky things actually.

As soon as I told my oldest daughter my bear’s name, she said I had to name my next pointy eared pet Nimoy, after Leonard Nimoy, the actor who portrayed Spock in the original Star Trek show and movies. I said that I would of course and went out and tamed a moonstalker to name Nimoy. It was then that I decided that for the first time ever, my hunter pet names were going to follow a theme. A Star Trek theme. A theme where no hunter of mine had gone before…

Calador with Tiberius and Nimoy.
Calador sleeping soundly with his pet protectors.

No sooner had I posted a screenshot of Calador standing with Tiberius the bear and Nimoy the moonstalker on Twitter than a fellow Warcraft player suggested I get the large crab with the knife and name him Sulu. I knew nothing about crab pets and certainly not that any had knives, but I did some research on the subject and agreed that I would. In Star Trek, Sulu is a fencer, so of course the knife made sense.

The next day I hopped on Sriset long enough to go to Suramar and kill Pinchshank, the evil death crab who drops the Crab Shank weapon/toy that all crab hunter pets can use. Pinchshank dropped the weapon and I hopped on Calador to go hunting for a crab pet.

Sriset facing off against Pinchshank and his huge knife.
Sriset’s Hati wolves taking down the armed crab.

As Sulu wears yellow in Star Trek, I looked through the crab pets on Petopia.com for one that was yellow and low enough for then level 18 Cal to tame. The crab listed as yellow was too high level for Cal, so instead I chose the bronze crab with its mix of yellow and green. Plus, Cal was already in Westfall, so it just meant a trip to the north shore to tame one.

Cal had no trouble taming the bronze crab and I promptly named it Sulu and equipped it with the Crab Shank. I’d never had a crab pet before, and I didn’t realize they were tanks! They’re very clicky when they walk but the new crab models are quite adorable so I’m happy having Sulu. There’s just something extra cool about a knife-wielding crab.

Calador and Sulu wielding the crab shank.
That spider shouldn’t have messed with Sulu!

As I love taming pets on my hunters, my Star Trek theme for their names will continue on Calador. There’s plenty of names to choose from and I’m sure my animal menagerie will be quite unique as it engages on more voyages through Azeroth…

gaming, Pandaria, Player perspective, Questing, Warcraft, Warcraft Books, Warcraft characters, Warcraft Fanfiction, Warcraft Writing

A Timed Quest…Of Sorts

The clock in Stormwind City

As anyone who plays World of Warcraft knows, timed quests can be an interesting challenge. Personally, I’m pretty bad at them as I feel too pressured, get stressed, become frazzled, and inevitably mess something up.

Regardless, I’ve created a timed quest of sorts for myself that isn’t nearly as frazzling as anything Warcraft has ever thrown my way. My timed quest is to finish editing the first chapter of my World of Warcraft fanfiction and post it on this blog on Monday, May, 6, 2019. As I write this, that date is approaching fast.

There are a few reasons why I made this deadline for myself. The first one being that that date is my father’s birthday. He would’ve turned 78 this year, but he passed away in 2009. He was one of the biggest supporter of my writing and he was always encouraging me to try to get my fantasy writing published.

I did send my writing to publishing companies a couple times, but the generic rejection letters deflated my hopes rather quickly. Even so, I think my dad would appreciate me posting my fanfiction writing on his birthday.

Another reason for giving myself this deadline is simply to motivate myself to finish the editing and put the fanfiction I’ve been talking about out there for others to read. My first chapter is rather long, so it might just be an excerpt of the chapter, but there is much more to post after that first installment.

My World of Warcraft fanfiction starts out with the story of my blood elf warlock named Salxi and her adventures in Pandaria. From there it expands into many more characters, all based on my various toons in the game. I daresay being able to actually go into Azeroth for research is extremely helpful!

Salxi and her crew of demons.

So be watching this blog come Monday, May 6, 2019 and you’ll find an excerpt of the first chapter of my World of Warcraft fanfiction. I still don’t have a name for it, so perhaps I’ll brainstorm on that this weekend. Wouldn’t want to rush things… 😉

gaming, Player perspective, Questing, Warcraft, Warcraft characters, Warcraft Writing

When in Doubt, Create a New Toon

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My latest death knight astride her mount.

Yesterday I played my blood elf hunter, Sriset, for a while working on reaching exalted with the last few factions she needed. However, I find that tedious after a while so once I finished the emissary quests for the day I was looking for something different to do.

As I’m an altoholic with all 50 slots filled on my account, I obviously enjoy making new toons. I couldn’t do that yesterday though until I deleted a couple toons. That was easy enough to do because I had a couple toons on a realm and no longer remembered why.

In fact, I had a night elf warrior I hadn’t played in so long that when I logged in she was parked where Auberdine used to be. I was very confused at first as to why she wasn’t in an inn and then went, oh my!

The other toon on that server was a draenei death knight because when I start on a new realm I usually start with a DK so I can make some gold somewhat quickly. After checking the toons over though, I concluded they didn’t have enough money or items worth saving, so I deleted them.

With two slots now open, I chose a new server I haven’t played on before and made, you guessed it, a death knight. Specifically a female blood elf death knight. I already have such a toon at 112 on a different server, but one can never have too many elves, in my opinion. 😉

My belf DK stole a tiny horse for her future mount.

I had a lot of fun running her through the DK starter quests, even though I’ve done them more times than I can count. I think that’s because Wrath of the Lich King was the expansion that came out when I started playing. I started by playing Burning Crusade, but Wrath will always be my marker for when I started playing World of Warcraft.

With my heirloom armor on, my belf DK reached 60 shortly before finishing the starter area. But as the server was new to me and not compatible with any other servers I’m on, I needed to get her some funds for flying. Such occasions make me very happy that WoW tokens now exist. I don’t buy them very often, but they certainly come in handy!

After buying my token and putting it up for auction, I headed to Razor Hill for some Noblegarden fun on my DK. The area was busy of course, but there were still plenty of eggs to be had. I even found a nice little spot where three eggs spawned.

Noblegarden eggs
Egg under table and egg in box.

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Egg behind the bags too!

I stood there and collected the eggs and no one else even came near me. I would’ve happily let them take the eggs if they wanted, but I had no competition last night.

After that, I took my DK to Outland and parked her at the inn at Thrallmar. It’ll take her a little over a week to get full rest experience, but I certainly have numerous toons to play in the interim. Or I may be a rebel and play her without experience. But knowing me, probably not. 😉

gaming, Player perspective, Questing, Warcraft, Warcraft achievements, Warcraft characters, Warcraft Hunters, Warcraft rogues, Warcraft Writing

Mounts as Motivation

When Blizzard first talked about the World of Warcraft achievement Two Sides to Every Tale where a player could earn two new mounts, I was intrigued. I thought it was cool that they were rewarding players (like myself) for playing both factions through the war campaigns and story lines. I also liked the idea of having a horse mount for Horde and wolf mount for Alliance.

With the help of my oldest daughter, I got my Horde main, Sriset, through the war campaign and story lines without much issue. However, my Alliance main, Syaine, was another story.

On my night elf rogue, Syaine, I’d become stuck on the quest called The Treasury Heist. I couldn’t get past the section where I had to run the gauntlet with all the traps combined in one horrible section. I tried it several times when it was first released, but after dying all those times, I decided to give up.

But then recently I started thinking that I really wanted those mounts from Two Sides to Every Tale and I decided to try the seemingly impossible quest again. I told myself I’d give it one more go and see if I could do it.

Well, it took me three more tries of running the gauntlet in one night but I finally made it!

After that, the rest of the Alliance war campaign was easy. Time consuming, but easy.

Along with the Alliance war campaign, I also had to complete The Pride of Kul Tiras achievement. I’d stopped working toward it when I hit the first dungeon quest, but after surviving the gauntlet, doing random groups for dungeons didn’t seem as intimidating anymore.

It took me a couple days, but yesterday morning I finally completed the last step with A Nation United. I was so happy to have the achievement notification flash up on my screen along with the notification of the Ironclad Frostclaw mount added to my collection!

Once I got past the horrible gauntlet segment of that one quest, grinding for the rest of the required achievements for the mounts was actually fun. It was nice doing something that felt important on Syaine again, as I’d grown tired of warfronts, daily quests, and rep grinding. Now that I’ve got my mounts, I’ll go back to playing lower level alts until the next interesting part of Battle for Azeroth comes out.

gaming, Hati, Questing, Warcraft, Warcraft Hunters, Warcraft Writing

So Many Hati, So Little Time

Sriset with Serpentbite Hati, my favorite Hati coloration!

When I learned that hunters would be losing Hati when Titanstrike lost its power, I was disappointed and sad. I was somewhat pleased to learn that beast mastery hunters would still be able to have two pets, but it just wasn’t going to be the same without my favorite lightning sparking wolf, Hati.

I was therefore very excited to hear that whenever the mythical patch 8.1.5 came out, beast mastery hunters would be able to get Hati back! With all the other things coming with that patch, it was hard to pick what my favorite element was. But now that I’ve got Hati back, I’d say it’s definitely him.

The quest to retrieve the two pieces of Hati proved more challenging than I expected and I was killed by Hati twice in the process, but it was worth it! The cinematic to put Hati’s two pieces back together was beautifully done and I just wish I’d known it was coming so I could’ve made a video of it. Perhaps if the quest still exists for my void elf hunter, I’ll record it then.

Although I didn’t get video of the cinematic, I took several pictures of it and here are some of my favorites:

Okay, so my favorites were pretty much all the screenshots I took, but oh well! I’m certainly not the only hunter who’s happy to have Hati back.

Another perk of having Hati back is that he’s now rideable too! Hunters have to buy a special object to make him rideable for an hour, but it’s worth gold in my opinion to be able to hop on the pet I already have with me. I hope they expand it to all pets someday, but I’m not holding my breath.

Riding Hati!

Yet another bonus of having Hati back is that I can now have him in six different colors, i.e. six different Hati pets. I of course collected them all and named them according to their essences to help keep them straight. The only one I kept named Hati was the Hati’s sacrifice version because it was specific to the quest to regain him.

Serpentbite Hati and Boarshot Cannon Hati, my favorite color combo!
Eaglewatch Hati and Elekk’s Thunder Hati. Eagle would not cooperate for the pic and Sri was exasperated. Lol.
Titanstrike Hati and Hati’s Sacrifice Hati.

I am ridiculously happy to have Hati back and have him in every color too! He’s the first six pets in Sriset’s stable for now and I look forward to our continued adventures in Azeroth!

gaming, Player perspective, Questing, Warcraft, Warcraft Writing

Zandalari trolls! At last!

Queen Talanji and my Zandalari druid.
My Zandalari shaman listening to his queen.

Yesterday was the day my oldest daughter and I had been waiting for since we first heard about Battle for Azeroth and the new playable race of Zandalari trolls. It was finally the day of the patch that would make the Zandalari trolls playable!

Yesterday was the day my oldest daughter and I had been waiting for since we first heard about Battle for Azeroth and the new playable race of Zandalari trolls. It was finally the day of the patch that would make the Zandalari trolls playable!

We’d had to wait longer than we expected to, but we were more than happy to group up on my blood elf hunter and her troll rogue and tackle the quest to unlock the Zandalari.

My blood elf hunter and my daughter’s troll rogue with Talanji and the gang.

The quests to unlock them were interesting and contributed more to the story, but I really didn’t need to be turned into a bug by Krag’wa! That was the most stressful part of the whole experience for me.

For that stress I blame Jani, the loa of discarded things. Wowpedia calls Jani a male, but to me that annoying voice of hers is female. Her quests turn you into a saurid and I’ve died many times doing them. My daughter does a lovely impression of Jani saying, “Silly Saurid, ya be dead again!” It makes me twitch.

Fortunately, I didn’t get killed while in bug form and I found the tests of Talanji by the remaining loas much more tolerable.

Good old Bwonsamdi looking for a bargain.

The end result of the quests was unlocking the Zandalari and I was FINALLY able to create the male shaman and male druid I’d been wanting to since I heard about the race being playable.

While my daughter plays the original style trolls, the constant hunching and crouching of the males make me feel like I’m hunching too. I never got into the female trolls. I made several toons of them, but I eventually deleted all of them.

My daughter came up with the names for my two new toons and I eagerly started them in the game. I had originally paid attention to what the druid forms of Zandalari were going to be, but when they kept pushing off when they’d been released, I gave up on them ever being playable. I was therefore pleasantly surprised by the moonkin form of my druid.

My Zandalari druid in moonkin form jumping for joy!

I’ve created shamans before, but the horde races that can be them weren’t really for me either. I can happily say that I love my Zandalari shaman and look forward to leveling him and finally fully experiencing the class.

My Zandalari shaman.

It might be unpopular opinion, but I miss when new races started at level one and had a whole starting area to quest through before going out into the rest of Azeroth. I’m not sure why Blizzard abandoned this concept, but they did and so I’ll adjust accordingly.

To have my Zandalari feel a bit more “at home” outside of Zandalar, I plan on questing them through the starter zones of perhaps the orcs and trolls of Durotar or even the blood elves of Sunstrider Isle. Considering how insignificant I feel on my blood elf hunter when I’m questing with my daughter’s troll, it might be nice to be a big troll among tiny elves. We shall see…

gaming, Questing, Warcraft, Warcraft characters, Warcraft Writing

Déjà vu in Eversong Woods

My daughter’s blood elf mage and my blood elf warrior questing in Eversong Woods.

This past weekend I created yet another new World of Warcraft character, this time it was a blood elf warrior. I already have two warriors, a male draenei and a female nightborne, but I had yet to create a non-demon hunter or non-death knight version of a blood elf. I created the male blood elf warrior as research for my Warcraft fanfiction, so I could “live” his backstory, as it were.

On my brand new blood elf warrior, I did the quests in the starting area of Sunstrider Isle and got him to level six this past weekend. Then last night I decided to play him again for a bit. I have a few pieces of heirloom armor that I use for new toons, but the appearance wasn’t quite befitting a blood elf.

My heirloom armor as it appears once created.

To fix the wardrobe issue, I ran him all the way to Orgrimmar where I transmogged his gear into as much of the Sin’dorei heritage armor as I could. His belt can’t be transmogged yet, but I’ll live.

My blood elf warrior resplendent in the Sin’dorei heritage armor.

Amid my running back and forth, I asked my oldest daughter if she would be kind enough to get on her low level mage and invite my new warrior into our guild called Rawr Flex. She said she would and that we should quest together for a bit. I thought that idea sounded quite lovely and so I invited her to a group and started on my way to catch up with her toon in Fairbreeze Village.

My fabulous blood elf warrior dashing through Eversong Woods.

To go from Orgimmar back to Eversong Woods requires taking the portal to Undercity and then taking another portal from the Ruins of Lordearon to Silvermoon City. Not a horrible way to travel really, but at level eight with no riding, running takes a while. Plus, I hate Undercity and really don’t mind that it’s destroyed in Battle for Azeroth.

As I made my way through the streets of Silvermoon City and out into Eversong Woods amid the gently flying dragonhawk hatchlings gliding about, I was struck with a feeling of deja vu. The feeling grew stronger as I ran across The Dead Scar with its skeletal mobs called plaguebone pillagers.

A lazy dragonhawk hatchling flying by.
Nearing The Dead Scar filled with Scourge.

My running journey on my blood elf warrior was so familiar because I’d taken a similar journey when I first started playing Warcraft and I was running to catch up with my brother. Except then I was on my female blood elf hunter, Sriset, and he was on a blood elf male of some class I no longer remember.

Last night I was once again running to catch up to a family member, but this time it was my oldest daughter, a player I’m responsible for bringing into the game of Warcraft. She’s also a much better player than I and more enjoyable to quest with than my brother was because she waits for me and tends to get just as lost as I do.

My daughter’s mage playing “keep away” with her frost nova spell while my warrior attacks un-stealthily from behind.

It felt sort of surreal when I realized that 10+ years had passed since I first ran through Eversong Woods and crossed The Dead Scar. Back then I knew nothing of the lore of the blood elves. I didn’t understand what The Dead Scar was and I didn’t even notice that there was a broken gate into Silvermoon City where Arthas and his Scourge army broke through.

But this time, after playing the game for years and reading Arthas: Rise of the Lich King by Christie Golden, I knew the lore well and respected it.

My warrior observing the broken gate into Silvermoon City.

So much has changed in my life since my first character sprang to life in Azeroth over a decade ago, but last night reminded me that Warcraft has come with me on my journey and has now become part of my oldest daughter’s journey. I look forward to experiencing many more adventures in World of Warcraft and continuing to see Azeroth through fresh eyes with the help of my daughter.