Mages, ten-man raiding, and other things that are awesome.

After leveling to 85 and spending some time on instances and reps to gear my main, I thought I’d set some time aside for a little lowbie alt. I’ve come to accept this about myself – I like leveling. Whether it’s through instancing, questing, exploring – or lately, herbing – it’s a relaxing process for me. Some people are one character people, and I respect that. But I wanted to see the new zones.

I’ve even come to accept that I’ll never have “one 85 of each class,” because there are honestly some classes I don’t want. So instead I have multiples. That means two warriors (81 and 28), two mages (85 and 80) and most recently, two druids (80 and 27). But this druid has assumed two different incarnations.

What Big Teeth You Have, Grandmother

I was excited to make a worgen druid. Originally the plan had been to make a warlock, but as I mentioned, I accepted that I don’t necessarily want one of each class. I had cloth/caster heirlooms that would serve as well for a druid, and I’d love to have a power-gathering character. (She mines! She herbs! She is the incredible flying druid!) I was a bit torn on the gender; the odd, foxy features of the females didn’t immediately appeal, but I figured they’d grow on me.

Looking despondent - probably because when they put her in the stocks they wedged her staff into the wood. I'd be bummed too.

So here’s Francisca, worgen druid. I played her to level thirteen. My impressions of the starting zone were mostly positive. I liked how quickly the action moved and the quests were organized in a logical manner. The flow was very nice, and the point at which the quests shout back to previous Kaldorei lore were great. I enjoyed the eerie feeling of the zone, the little things (like mastiffs and foxes!) and the accents of the NPCs. They’re a bit over the top but they still give strong flavour. You know you’re definitely not in Stormwind any more.

What I wasn’t feeling as attached to was my worgen herself. She lumbered everywhere, wrathing and moonfaring, but I just wasn’t feeling it. No matter, I thought – she can always remain human most of the time. The only problem with this is using the worgen racial, Darkflight – means that you are, naturally, transformed back into a worgen. And I use things like that on cooldown – it makes you faster! But despite that, I liked her as a human and ultimately intended for her to spend most of her time in flight form – so it didn’t really matter. I probably would have kept playing her, until I reached a pivotal point in the quest progression.

I’m trying not to give spoilers here for folks who want to do this, but essentially it’s a series of quests that make heavy use of phasing. You take one quest, proceed to accomplish it, and pick up the next quest afterwards. The next part has you following an NPC with an aggravating habit of dashing off in an unseen direction. I happened to get this quest just as it was time for us to head out for the evening (and I’d failed it). So, no problem (I thought) I’ll just drop the quest and park myself in front of the NPC that gives it, so that I can pick it up the next time I play.

The next day, I logged in to continue with my druid – the NPC didn’t have a quest for me. I was sure it was the correct NPC; but she had nothing. I tried moving around the phased zone by myself to see if I’d missed something. I went back to the beginning of the chain, thinking perhaps it had bugged out and I needed to start all over again. Nothing. I checked the Wowhead comments – I wasn’t the only one who’d had this happen.

I thought about my willingness to open a ticket and wait a very long time to have this one quest fixed. I thought about how this is a pretty major bug to have made it into a game, especially since it’s happened to other people, and I was frustrated by it. I thought about my lumbering druid with the interesting, albeit bugged zone.

Then I logged out, deleted her and made another night elf druid instead.

No Place Like Home

The world's stealthiest night elf. No, really!

I quite like the changes to the night elf starting area. They’ve streamlined things like silly gathering quests. When you go to kill spiders you bring the NPC with you so that you don’t have to run back and tell her, “I found this big, evil boss spider!” only to have her tell you, “Please go and kill the head honcho spider!” and then get lost in the cave again…although maybe that’s just me.

It is still a slower experience than the worgen starting area, possibly simply because of zone size. Shadowglen is a large zone – and I think the sole building needs an entrance at either end, because every night elf character I’ve ever leveled has circled that building at some time or another to find the front.

Other positive improvements include: putting the tree with the strange fruit along the shore of Lake Al’Ameth instead of wayyy on the other side of the zone, and also the escort NPC that accompanies you into the barrow dens is stupendous. She comes with a “we’ll point the way” green mist orb thing, incidentally my new favourite thing in the game. If I had a mist like that for running instances I’d never hesitate to tank them!

The Darkshore experience is definitely improved. My only regret (note, regret, not complaint) is that the combination of guild experience gains along with my heirlooms means I am outleveling my quests ridiculously fast. I haven’t done a single instance (although I am herbing and mining like a fiend) but all of my quests turn green and even grey before I have had a chance to hand them in. I’ve had to skip entire quest hubs for this reason. I’m a bit torn about it because I like to do every single quest possible, but my primary goal is to get this character high level so that she can start herbing and mining for me simultaneously. So I realize I could take off the heirlooms and slow the process down, but I’m unwilling to do that.

I had a tear in my eye as I ran through Ashenvale. I imagine I can hear all the Kaldorei characters I’ve ever known crying their outrage. Unfortunately, again I’ve out-leveled it and I may have to hop over to Stonetalon. I do really appreciate the new “Hero’s Board!” quests in the major cities. I know that I’ve often heard people ask, “Where am I supposed to go at level x?” These conveniently answer this question at any level, and they mean that you can pick up the quest there instead of having to find a breadcrumb in a lower zone before you can move on.

I’ve been thoroughly enjoying leveling my new druid – apparently, since she’s now double the level my worgen was when I dropped her. My other unspoken goal for her is that I’d like her to cover her own expenses – epic flying, possibly even the faster-than-epic-flying if that seems possible. I often level characters that end up draining my main character’s resources. If this one can be self-sufficient I’ll consider her quite a success.

 

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Comments on: "Worgen Frustration (or How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Love My Night Elf)" (20)

  1. I was also really impressed with the Shadowglen and Dolanaar questing — much improved! I haven’t done Stonetalon in a really long time and the improvements + a bazillion flight paths make it look really interesting.

    I’ve been wanting to give warriors a chance again (I have an 80 on a server I don’t play and don’t want to transfer her). I love the look of female night elf warriors, so fierce!

    Maybe that will be my “project” next week!

    • Female night elf warriors are awesome! They have that whole “Sentinel” vibe going on and their movements are so graceful. They say to me, “I am going to mess you up before you even know what happened.” Sounds like a great project to me! ;)

      • They still didn’t change that Female NE chest jump, tho. The least they could do is change that to make the racial movement a bit less adolescent male centric.

      • I admit that it used to bother me more when I was a dedicated roleplayer. There’s nothing like having a serious conversation with someone and your night elf is all *bounce bounce*. I don’t tend to notice it as much because I don’t stand still very often (unless I’m mailbox chilling, and then I often go AFK).

        The worgen SNIFF SNIFF SNIFF thing is so much more annoying. The first time I heard it, I thought my dog was under my desk having some weird dream! (He often sleeps under the desk, but usually snores, not snuffles).

      • Yeah, trying to have a serious conversation while that is going on is a wee bit annoying. Kind of like a Succubus getting that whip thing going while you’re trying to figure out where to go next.

  2. Harmhoney of Zul'jin said:

    I’ve run into a similar phasing issue. While leveling I dabbled in each new 80+ zone and did a few quests here and there. As it turned out after a few quests in deepholm I leveled and moved on and when the deepholm quests turned green I deleted them. Later I learned that Therazane requires you to quest in Deepholm in order to eventually get the tabard but much to my chagrin the questgivers weren’t interested in sharing. I’m only able to play a few hours each evening so my gm ticket has been pending for 3 days now. Even if we had to do some quests over it seems like they would have forseen a way to reboot the phasing questlines.

    • That’s really frustrating. :( In my case it’s just a minor annoyance because it’s a low-level alt, but your phasing issues are affecting your high-level character’s progression. I hope your ticket is answered soon!

  3. Maybe you need to create a Worgen just so you can RP a bit on Moon Guard, Vid. It sounds like you’d enjoy that a bit more than anything else out of a Worgen.

    • Perhaps! I’m sure you can relate though that picking and choosing where you spend your time can be the hardest thing when you’re “split” on multiple servers. I spend most of my time on MR just to be around my folks, although I do miss RP sometimes. You know that if I RPed it probably wouldn’t be a worgen. ;)

      • Perhaps! I’m sure you can relate though that picking and choosing where you spend your time can be the hardest thing when you’re “split” on multiple servers.

        Absolutely. I need to get a bit more face time on MR, although my problem stems from not being on at the same time as the rest of us nutty bloggers. (Okay, except for Cass and Lath, but they’ve got the excuse that they’re in Australia.) Maybe when things die down a bit on the dual leveling push, I’ll have some more time to spread around. And maybe pigs will fly too.

        You know that if I RPed it probably wouldn’t be a worgen. ;)

        How could I forget? You love to play those Blood Elves. :-D

  4. I’m really sorry to hear about your trouble with the Gilnean starting area – I myself did a full worgen reroll, and I’m enjoying it immensely, but I had to abandon and re-do that quest (Battle, yes?). It really put a dent in my joy that evening because re-taking it and running all the way back takes SO long.

    And yeah, when I leveled through the night elf areas, I found myself struggling to reconcile completionism with efficiency. I started Ashenvale as green, finished it as deep grey, and actually had to skip Stonetalon and Desolace both, entering a green Feralas.

    If you had similar issues, did you perhaps, as I, do all the dungeons once as you went by?

    Full agreement on the changes to the night elf leveling areas all the same, though. You really need to go back and do Ashenvale!

    • Yes, that’s the chain. I think it was poorly executed or tested, which is too bad because it should have been epic and fun.

      I’ll make sure to see all of Ashenvale – probably as I’m questing with Millya! I’m glad to hear that you’re having fun with your worgen, truly! I know some people really enjoy them, the quest just forced me to acknowledge that they probably weren’t for me.

      I didn’t actually do any dungeons at all. My extra XP comes from 10% via guild perk, 20% via heirloom gear. It sure adds up! I think the first one is 10%? Unless it’s five. Errr. Anyway, close enough!

  5. ahh I made a little worgen! Have not had a chance to really play her.. but did get to the 2nd main area.. the first lvl 1-7 quests where totally fun!

  6. I really enjoyed the Worgen starting area. The quests were great and engaged me like a good book (keeping me up way past any sane parent’s bed time), I enjoyed playing a Druid for the first time in ages, and I was really, really impressed with what I saw. I logged out in Darnassus with the intent to level Lunacyn’s Herbalism and Skinning the next day.

    Now, I did manage to do that, at least (and play a few WSG matches, like *that* is a surprise) before finally looking at the character screen and going:

    You look goofy, girl.

    No, really. She rekindled my enjoyment of my druid to the point where I’m probably bringing my deleted level 64 back to life (and back to the Alliance)… but as a Night Elf.

    See, I really wanted to play my druid as a human most of the time, but every time I dismounted, used Darkflight, or looked at a mailbox funny, I was back in that goofy worgen form.

    So I deleted her. And I’m going to bring back my Night Elf, bounce and all.

    See! You’re not alone!

  7. I didn’t have to redo that quest you’re talking about, but I did have to relog a couple times before I could turn in the quest.

    Still, luckily I got past it and my Worgen Druid is currently working his way through Darkshore. I used to hate that zone, but now I’m very much enjoying myself. I’m hoping to see a lot more updates like that. :) (Most of Kalimdor, except Shimmering Flats through Tanaris and Un’Goro, I didn’t really like before. I’m hoping I’ll enjoy the entire continent now. :))

  8. I played a worgen druid on the beta… so haven’t felt the need to play one again yet – although I did miss out on the final quest – when I got it just came up with a speech bubble saying something along the lines of “This will be an epic cutscene and ending quest for the zone.”

    That said – I couldn’t get along with them either – the run was manageable but I hated the casting animation!

    In terms of slots/classes – I really only have rogues to try out – so I’m tempted to abandon my current rogue and go the worgen line at some point… but rogues are the bottom of my list in terms of classes I want to level.

  9. [...] a comment Thisalee (my latest druid!) has been leveling madly, and flinging herself into LFD with gleeful abandon at every opportunity. [...]

  10. Heh, I rolled a worgen druid called Valentinian. He was supposed to be urbane and foppish but my character concept was completely undermined by the worgen caster animation – which looks like he’s trying to dry his nailpolish in a hurry. So no worgen for Tam, like you I simply couldn’t bring myself to spend the next 85 levels and beyond with a lumbering, flailing idiot.

    • Haha. I didn’t want to be too specific, as I know there are people who greatly enjoy worgen, but they just look wrong to me. Arguments about them being an aberration of the natural order of things aside – I wish their art had turned out a bit differently. Ah well, there’s nothing wrong with another night elf druid, too!

  11. [...] This Tuesday is going to be a little different, in that it’s just sketches I did quickly. I was doing some idle musing the other day and I started thinking about how disappointed I was with the female worgen. I fully intended to make a worgen when Cataclysm came out. I had two names reserved for the purpose, even (one male, one female). I usually prefer to play female characters, because I just do. I wrote about what happened with my worgen. [...]

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