Day Eighty - 26 June 2011

This was the day. Fascinating that it occurred on Day Eighty of the journal. Kallixta was just short of 50% of the way to level 80 and I knew I had the time to get there. What I couldn't decide was how I was going to get there. I wasn't interested in Sholozar Basin any more and I couldn't get excited about starting in Storm Peaks or anywhere else in Northrend. I wanted to get going on the Cataclysm stuff, so I decided I'd have another run around Hyjal, mining Obsidium. If gathering wasn't quick enough, I could also kill a few mobs while the rested bonus lasted.

I found Kallixta was now plenty strong enough to handle the mobs and my flight path around the zone was much more familiar now, so I found myself making better progress than expected.

I hadn't seen many others in the zone, so I was surprised and annoyed when a troll ninja'd a node while I was fighting off some mob that was adjacent. I had time to tell him "Yer Welcome" before moving on. I was later pleasantly surprised to get a letter from the troll's Alliance side toon apologizing and sending me a recompense. I discovered I really wasn't that annoyed. I sent back a little present of my own as thanks for the apology. Have any of y'all gotten such apologies? Have any of you sent one? I know if it was a PvP realm, he could probably have killed me as well as taken the node and no apology would have been expected. I think this is why some has disdain for a carebear realm.

I had completed another circuit of the realm and was extremely close to finishing my level. I knew it would take only another mob or two, so I made sure I'd be quicker to grab the screenshot.

Day Seventy Nine - 25 June 2011

With Dangerously Delicious, Kallixta succeeded at two things. This finished Chasing Marcia, but the reputation gain also put her over Honored with Kirin Tor. This last bit meant she qualified for another purchase for her Holy spec, Shroud of Dedicated Research.

I felt I had delayed long enough and it was time to give this "healing thing" a real try. I joined the LFD queue and awaited the die roll.

Halls of Lightning

Wow. My mind went blank. I couldn't remember if this was going to be easy or hard. The group didn't wait for me to get ready, despite my warning them I was a greenhorn. They were already fighting the first boss before I had a chance to put Beacon on the tank!

Small wonder two of the party died before the boss did. There was enough pause after that to allow me to get my act together. Suddenly I get the rhythm. I probably used Flash more than necessary as I was trying to better understand party needs and I definitely didn't use Holy Shock and Word of God as often as I should. There were a few cooldowns I managed, but everything went much better after the first battle. The trash was never a problem, it was only on the Bosses that I was hard pressed.

I'm sure I missed plenty of loot opportunities, as the party moved so quickly. I never saw anything I really 'needed' until the end, and I lost that. But I felt I earned the credit.

Later was the rescheduled Guild Run for Ruins of Ahn'Qiraj. Unfortunately we didn't have enough to qualify as a Guild Run, but sufficient for an easy RP run. That was the plan as we were supposed to explore the Ruins for signs of corruption by the Old Gods.

Despite leaving Righteous Defense up, Kallixta was only level 79 and couldn't keep up threat compared to the other level 85 tank. It wasn't a big deal and it should have freed me for the role play, but it just wasn't happening.

It was my third or fourth visit to the Ruins, although my first with Kallixta, so things were just familiar enough that I knew where we were going and what the bosses looked like. She picked up Qiraji Regal Drape, but I can't decide if I want to grind the reputation needed to complete. It isn't something I've done really, so it's within Kallixta's charter, if you will, but there's plenty of higher priority things.

After killing the final boss and gaining the achievement, the party spent a bit of time role playing. The worked a bit, but I wish I had prepared better. In fact, I strongly wish to repeat as a real Guild Run and with more effort at role playing during the whole thing.

In the post-action analysis with the Guild, I did hear one great suggestion. Include emotes in the macros! Then each "Judgement" would include some "Feel the Judgement of the Light!" emote. It isn't much, but sounds like fun. I'll give it some thought.

Day Seventy Eight - 23 June 2011

Tonight was originally going to be a Guild Run of Ruins of Ahn'Qiraj, but it was rescheduled. I had already cleared my calendar, so I had some uninterrupted time. First time to do was finish the fire quests: Extinguishing Outland, Desecration of Outland, Flame Warden of Outland, The Fires of Azeroth

Last Fires at Area 51
 I next returned to Sholozar and managed to ding 79 while doing quests for the Avatar of Freya.

My but you have Big Feet, Freya
Something I did triggered 5 Dungeon Quests Completed, but I don't remember what the quest was and it didn't require entering any instances.

As explained before, I spent time on gearing my Holy Spec for hopefully a Dungeon Run this weekend, queued as a healer. Two items were crafted because Kallixta now qualifies from the level increases. The other items required visited to reputation vendors. She's also very close to Honored with Kirin Tor, like another Cooking or Fishing quest close, and she can get their cloak, too.
There's a crafted necklace that I've gathered the materials for. I just need to find a jewelcrafter. There are several in my Guild.

While we have great understanding of the significance of certain round number levels, I was happily surprised to remember that level 79 unlocks the final glyph spots. I think it's excellent to spread out some of these rewards to odd number levels, don you?

Day Seventy Seven - 22 June 2011

The plan tonight was simple, travel up and down Kalimdor, completing the fire quests:

Extinguishing Kalimdor
Flame Warden of Kalimdor
1000 Quests Completed
Burning Hot Pole Dance

Kallixta gathered several flight paths she hadn't collected before and raided Thunder Bluff, but didn't bother dying in Orgrimmar. I started in Darnassus and worked my way down the western side to Uldum, where Kallixta actually dinged 78 from a subzone discovery XP on her way to desecrating the horde's fire there! She then worked up the eastern side. It was all over in a reasonable time.

Day Seventy Six - 21 June 2011

The obvious follow up to the regearing on Kallixta's Protection spec was the same for the Holy spec. To get the Venture Bay Relic, I needed to take the Lighthouse and I was surprised at how long it took for the NPCs to show up after the switch. I ended up hopping alts in the interrum.

Brilliant Saronite Belt
Brilliant Saronite Boots
Brilliant Saronite Bracers
Brilliant Saronite Gauntlets
Brilliant Saronite Legplates
Brilliant Saronite Pauldrons
Cloak of Frozen Spirits
Venture Co. Libram of Mostly Holy Deeds

I subsequently spent the evening flying across the Eastern Kingdoms, honoring and desecrating fires along the way. The XP and Guild rep gains seem worthwhile. While in Ironforge, I did the fishing daily (Young Ironjaw) which is much more fun than what Stormwind had on offer (Crabby). By happenstance, Kallixta picked up 1000 Fish. I want to clarify that not pursuing the achievements for the Achievement Score, but things like this are accumulated as I grab some easy XP, Gold and Skill points. While flying across the Eastern Plaguelands, Full Caravan popped. I just happened to fly over the hidden trigger, whatever that might have been.

Between Flame Warden of Eastern Kingdoms and Extinguishing Eastern Kingdoms, I gathered sufficient XP to expect level 78 before Kalimdor is done, especially those tasty Extinguish quests. I only ran into a couple PvP issues. One was in Booty Bay, visiting a vendor while my flag was still up, yet I got away in time. Another was at the Undercity. I dropped down and got the credit, but couldn't get away quickly enough. I declined to attempt it as Silvermoon City.

In all, this was a very quick visit with lots of value. I expect to do Kalimdor tomorrow and maybe Outland and Northrend together Thursday. Friday the guild is hoping to run AQ. I'll be there, whether on Kallixta or Martuska.

Day Seventy Four and Seventy Five - 18, 19 June 2011

A consequence of seeing some recent quest items that fit my Holy Spec, I reviewed my existing equipment. I discovered that with level 76, there were now some blacksmithing pieces that were upgrades, in particular the Tempered Saronite and Brilliant Saronite sets. I had enough metal accumulated in my bank that crafting some armor sounded good. Despite my good intentions to get my Holy Spec going, I fell back on the comfort with Protection. After all, I reasoned, I'm doing PvE questing, not LFD yet.

So after crafting the Tempered Saronite pieces (except for two I need to level into yet) I sent the materials to a guildmate to make a cloak and then went to Venture Bay for a Relic upgrade. I'll be repeating this for Holy, except it will be a different Venture Bay Relic, Martuska can make the cloak and it'll be the Brilliant Saronite set.

I repeated the farming for good Mining Nodes, exploring Twilight Highlands this time. By the time I'd made a circle of the highlands and another of Hyjal, I managed Professional Illustrious Grand Master! Inspired by reaching 525 in Mining, and having picked up the 50 Cooking Awards Saturday morning, I decided to spend them on some recipes and Crates of Tasty Meat. Thus I picked up Grand Master Cook and Illustrious Grand Master Cook!

On Sunday I ran through Hemet's quest hub in Sholozar Basin and managed to ding 77.

With the diligence I've applied to the Auction House and crafting, Kallixta had sufficient gold to purchase artisan riding and pick up The Right Stuff. The speed increase is noticeable!

20 Days, Day 9 - My first blog post

This is my Day 9 post in Spellbound's  20 Days of WoW Blogging Challenge.

My very first public post was written four days after creating Kallixta. It was more a justification on why I started on the Wyrmrest Accord server than anything else. Because I already knew I was going to use a diary format focussing on Kallixta and I needed to write four entries already, I merely plunked down some explanation about who was on the server that drew me to start my new character.

I think it is significant that I spent most of my time talking about my bank alt and my daughter's character. Five sentances were scribbled down before I pushed that big POST button. I then wrote three entries about Days One, Two and Three. These all conformed to the format I expected to write in, but they don't have any graphics or links to wowhead or the like. It was much later before I attempted an IC entry.

I just noticed that I've posted 100 entries since, this being my 101st post. It's also about one month now until the anniversary of that posting. Cool!

Day Seventy Three - 15 June 2011

My fishing daily in Dalaran earned me a Weather-Beaten Fishing Hat, which was greatly appreciated. I noticed how behind my fishing skill on the Northrend Dailies. I managed 275, but I've a bit more to go before I can equip my Bone Fishing Pole.

With the recent professions upgrade, I decided to take advantage of the Mining XP and do a bit of gathering. I sailed to Darnassus and then flew from there to Hyjal. One circuit of this zone brought in stacks of Obsidium Ore, earned Explore Hyjal and got Kallixta most of the way to her next level. I aggroed a few Level 81 mobs when mining nodes and with concentration and judicious use of heals, I really had no trouble. The only death occurred when I tried to click my macro for displaying current coordinates and hit my mount macro instead, thus making my gryphon go away while I was high above the Rim of the World. That's when I discovered the closest graveyard was in Felwood!

Deciding to get serious and finish the level, I returned to Grizzly Hills and zipped through a few more quests. Most of the quest rewards seemed to only upgrade my Healing spec, such as Chestguard of Expressed Fury. I managed to complete Explore Grizzly Hills just before dinging 76.

This level opens up more glyphs and I haven't really looked into that. I also need to go back and pick up the Ivory-Reinforced Chestguard from the Kalu'ak and many of the Brilliant and Tempered Saronite items are upgrades I can craft myself. With all of these upgrades, I'll probably need to redo the gems, too.

I've been procrastinating in running dungeons with my Holy spec. I doubt I'll get to it this weekend, but by the next one I should have the time to do it.

Day Seventy Two - 5 June 2011

Earned Revered with Kalu'ak, but only then discovered the Honored rewards need level 76 and the Revered Mace good for the Holy spec needs level 78.

Glancing at the other Wrath Reputations, Kallixta has Friendly with Kirin Tor (thanks to the dailies), but there's no Kirin Tor reward she really needs until the Arcanum at Revered. However the Argent Crusade is Honored and has great leg armor, again once she's level 78. It all left me a bit puzzled as to what, if anything, I might work on instead of just forging ahead through Northrend.

However, after doing Wrathgate yesterday, I managed half of Grizzly Hills and dinged level 75. This qualified me to train up on my professions, earning Professional Grand Master with Mining and when I repeated it for Blacksmithing, picked up Working Day and Night.

I spent a bit of time setting up my Tradeskills addon for improved crafting for sale at the Auction House. I even made a Icebane Girdle for sale.

Day Seventy - 3 June 2011

25 Cooking Awards
Our Daily Bread
50 Daily Quests Complete
Fish or Cut Bait

For some time I've had a routine of checking in with Aldonza and the Auction House. I'd empty the mailbox, cancel and repost glyphs and others spend 15 minutes making gold. This week I didn't need to leave as early in the morning, instead spending a few minutes more doing dailies on my characters. At the least, I could manage the Stormwind fishing and cooking dailies, but for Kallixta, I could hearth to Dalaran and do the dailies there, too.

These achievements weren't pursued for their own right, but were a side effect of earning some gold and xp for a short time investment. It's also true that having picked up the Bone Fishing Pole, I realised Kallixta's fishing hadn't been keeping up. With Fish Don't Leave Footprints as earned from doing the fishing dailies, I had been seeing the Northrend Pools and wanting to farm them for money and cooking purposes. So a daily pump to fishing from the daily is a nice bonus for the 15 minutes I can spare.

20 Days, Day 8 - 10 things we don’t know about you

This is my Day 8 post in Spellbound's 20 Days of WoW Blogging Challenge.

  1. My favourite colour is dark denim blue.
  2. My text editor allows both American and British English spelling, so neither "my favourite colour" nor "my favorite color" are flagged as misspelled.
  3. My preferred text editor is Emacs. I use it for more than just text editing, of course.
  4. My first experience I can remember with the Interwebs was an usenet email exchange with Jerry Pournelle in 1979 using bang addressing. I was thrilled to know I was communicating with a favorite author. It was not to be the last time I would do it and it touches on a common theme in my life where Authors and Story-telling meet electronically and facelessly.
  5. While living in England I got hooked on roleplaying on a internet server. The first were PernMushes, but I graduated to some other MUX with dedicated RPers and am quite proud of our efforts. At least one of the friends I made there (C.E. Murphy) has gone on to be a big professional author. While I've met a few of these RP friend, I have never met Catie IRL.
  6. I love to drink a couple cups of coffee every morning, but try not to have caffeine after noon. I drink it black.
  7. I have two dogs, both adopted from the local animal shelter. Officially one is my daughter's, but somehow I'm the one feeding them each morning and taking them for walks in the evening.
  8. I have been tested on the Myer-Briggs scale as INTP, which you'd probably think of as the absent-minded professor stereotype. However, I have never forgotten to wear pants when leaving home. Shoes, socks, watch, keys "yes", but never pants.
  9. I'm a Professional Author. Really! I've sold 2 stories and earned almost $100. I've lost my amateur status and can claim to be a professional. I don't spend much time or worry about writing. As hobbies go, I spend far more time on other things, but selling a short story is a milestone mark I'm happy to have made. The stories were published as part of the Grantville Gazette in Eric Flint's 1632 series.
  10. After a few years of electronic exchanges (at Baen's Bar), I have met Eric Flint and have been personally thanked in a few afterwords in his books. He even named a major villain in one book after me! Just look for who gets called a "Dang Fool" in 1824.

Days Sixty Eight to Sixty Nine - 29-30 May 2011

The Memorial Day Weekend did see a lot of activity, but it was split betwixt multiple characters and this blog is concentrating on Kallixta. A lot of the other recent activity has been leveling professions and making gold. Martuska reached Professional Illustrious Grand Master in Enchanting and, when the Dreamcloth cooldown is up, in Tailoring too.

Kallixta managed to ding level 73 on Sunday. As I was deciding how to spend the new talent point, it struck me that I hadn't been keeping up on her Holy off-spec, despite trying to accumulate some Plate with Intellect. So I gave it full attention for awhile. After working on her talents and glyphs, I reviewed her armor and made a complete set. I added gems and some simple enchants, although not a huge investment. The guild had plenty of leftover Wrath gems and a guildie helped cut some for me. It wasn't until the evening of Memorial Day that the Holy Paladin made her debut. That same guildie has a Death Knight that was given a new second spec and we jumped into the queue together as Tank and Healer.

The LFD gave us Old Kingdom and the puggies had a plethora of Heirlooms and were patient with us. It went poorly at first until I got the hang of Judging, then I merely spent the rest of the time overhealing as I spammed Judgement and Holy Light. I picked up two Blues out of the dungeon: Slasher's Amulet and Volazj's Sabatons. We didn't bother with Jedoga, so Kallixta didn't finish the achievement. At least I remembered that this character isn't really about the achievements.

My guildie friend then gave me a patient tutorial on improving my performance. It was obvious that spamming two spells wasn't sufficient. Among the tips including a review of my talent selections and glyph choices. I swapped a prime and major glyph and may yet re-spec.

The big lesson was on use of Holy Shock and getting the Holy Power train rolling. Infusion of Light should also generate some efficiency, allowing Kallixta to be a real help and not just do a lot of overhealing. I wanted a chance to let these lessons sink in before I jump into the queue again.