Another month of gaming is in the rear view mirror. How did I do on my goals, and what should I do in February? Let’s find out! Continue reading
I was super excited about FFXIV’s new patch that arrived yesterday. As is often the case with FFXIV, there was so much new stuff that I couldn’t even remember everything that was coming. I ran home from work and hurried to get everything installed and ready so I could try out new stuff with a friend. And then I hit a brick wall.
I logged in and spent a few minutes unlocking the new raid first thing. I really wanted to see it, since I love FFXIV’s raids and this one has bosses based on one of my favorite FF games. Raids are also the only way I could play with my friend with us both in our preferred roles (we’re both healer mains). Unfortunately once I got it unlocked, I couldn’t actually queue. My item level is too low.
We ended up running one of the new dungeons instead, since I could actually do that and they drop gear that will help get me closer to being able to join the raid. My mood was ruined though, and I suspect I wasn’t very good company. Instead of being excited to see the new dungeon, I was annoyed that I had to play SMN instead of SCH, and that I was missing out on the raid.
Once we finished I ended up spending some time messing around with the new glamour system and that made me feel a bit better. I’m hoping it will be relatively painless to get geared up enough to catch up. This exact issue is one of the reasons I bounced off of FFXIV last expansion, but I’m not quite ready to give up on it again yet.
The kicker of this story is that after my disappointment and bad mood I went to look at the shiny new races they added to WoW…and couldn’t. There was a bug going around where none of your characters would show up on the server list or login screen, and I was lucky enough to experience it. I took it as a sign that I should do something else, so I spent the rest of the night working on my creative thing for the day instead.
Here’s hoping tonight is a better night for gaming!
Happy new year! December was a month of mostly not meeting my goals. Let’s resolve to do better in 2018!
December Goals in review:
WoW: Decide on a new long-term goal. Done! I’ve been chasing old transmog sets on my priest. As an extra bonus side project I’ve been trying to go through her tailoring and craft every item she still needs the appearance for too. It’s not super exciting but it is keeping me busy.
Destiny 2: Explore the new expansion content. Sort-of. I have explored some of the new expansion, but I still haven’t finished the story or moved on to the new grinds yet.
Diablo 3: Complete the last Necromancer set dungeon. Nope.
Horizon Zero Dawn: Complete the new DLC. Nope. I fully intended to do this over the holidays but I got distracted by other things.
WoW: See every Legion raid at least once, even if it’s just LFR. The last bits of the current WoW raid will be out for the LFR crowd this month. That means it’s time for me to see them. I still haven’t finished all the wings of the previous raid yet so I’ve got some queuing to do.
Destiny 2: Finish the Osiris storyline. I’ve been working through this with the spouse on my hunter and solo on my warlock. Hopefully I can finish both soon.
Diablo 3: Finish that last set dungeon already dang it. I have no motivation to play D3 right now but this goal has been on my list for months and it would feel great to knock it out.
Horizon Zero Dawn: Start playing the new DLC. I might not have time to finish it considering all the other things on my list this month, but I would at least like to see it.
Hollow Knight: Get to an ending. I picked this one up on the Steam holiday sale and have been loving it. I have a lot of trouble with the boss fights but I like everything else so much it balances out. I doubt I’ll ever get close to 100% completion, but I hope I can progress far enough to see an ending.
Whoops! I can’t believe it has been a couple weeks since I’ve posted anything. Lately my free time has been devoted more to creative things than to gaming. This has the positive effect of spending more time with my spouse, but the negative effect of feeling quite out of the loop with my online social circle.
I have been playing tiny bits of WoW, Diablo 3, and Destiny 2. Diablo isn’t doing much to hold my interest right now. It’s just something I log in for if I only have a few minutes and need to blow off some steam killing demons. WoW is doing a slightly better job of distracting me. I’ve given up completely on keeping up with current content in any way. Since I finished my “every class mount” project I’ve been drifting around, running old raids and chasing transmog and mounts and pets. Although I’m a little sad not to be running dungeons and/or raids with my friends, I’ve been enjoying myself in the most relaxed way possible. I might even finish leveling my horde-side monk soon, if I can muster the will to push through WoD.
On the other hand, Destiny 2 has been very hit or miss for me recently. I bought the first expansion but haven’t played it enough to finish the story yet. That’s a far cry from my enthusiasm when the game launched just a couple months ago. I’m planning to run through the story together with my spouse and hoping that will pull me back into the game. I really enjoyed leveling with a companion through the main story and am looking forward to doing that again. I have played just enough to get my first masterwork item. Sadly it was a sidearm, so it is completely useless to me. Hopefully I have the chance to earn something more useful soon.
Finally, I am in full-on nerd hype mode about Star Wars. I saw The Last Jedi last night and I’m pretty sure I need more time for my brain to finish processing it but I still loved it. I have a lot of feelings and opinions, but I’ll save them until the movie has been out a bit longer. No spoilers here.
Another month has come and gone, so it’s time to reflect on what I’ve been up to and what my new plans are.
November Goals in Review:
WoW: Get the warrior to 110. Done! I got my class mount too!
Destiny 2: Try the raid. Done! I haven’t completed it yet but I have at least seen it a few times.
Diablo 3: Finish the last Necromancer set mastery I’m missing. Nope. I did get the set farmed up on my seasonal necro, so I’m closer than I was before.
Complete the baseline chapters of the Season 12 journey. Done!
WoW: Decide on a new long-term goal. A goal to set a goal? WTF? Well after finishing up the last class story and mount, I realized I was flailing around with no direction. I need a really long-term project to chip away at every month, and I have no idea what the next one should be. It doesn’t help that what I really want to do is level a new alt to try out the new low-level zone scaling tech, but we’re not sure exactly when that patch is coming.
Destiny 2: Explore the new expansion content. I somewhat object to them calling these “expansions” but whatever. There are going to be new things to do and new gear to get. My excitement over D2 has died down but I at least want to see the new stuff.
Diablo 3: Complete the last Necromancer set dungeon. No excuses left at this point, I just need to sit down for an evening and knock this out.
Horizon Zero Dawn: Complete the new DLC. I had this preordered and I just haven’t had time to sit down and dig into it. I want to do that ASAP because I absolutely love this game and can’t wait to explore new parts of the world.
November was surprisingly productive, considering my play time has been dramatically lower than normal. Here’s hoping my December goals go well too.
Whoops. I accidentally got the Mountacular achievement, for getting 250 mounts. How was it an accident? Well, over the weekend I crafted a few of the jewelcrafting panther mounts that I was still missing. Today I happened to swap over to my paladin alt, and was greeted with the achievement when I logged in. I guess those panthers, on top of the original paladin mount and the one from the argent tournament were enough to push me over 250 once I logged on. What a happy surprise!
The felfire hawk reward is quite pretty, I love the color. I figured Wrath-era players might get a chuckle out of me posing here. Back before flying was enabled over old Dalaran, you could stay mounted if you could land in just the right spot on the well. That combined with the prime real estate in front of the bank made it a hot spot for showing off. Anyway, getting this mount was a fun distraction that really brightened my day!
I finally finished up the last class mount quest. The warrior class hall and story is very much not for me, much like the warrior class in general. I like the aesthetic of the halls of valor just fine, but I hate Odyn, he’s a jerk. That made all the class quests running around doing his errands for him so painful. The mount quest was more of the same, proving myself for the 10,000th time to Odyn by beating 4 other champions in combat. Then for some reason when he gave me my mount, I punched it in the face? Must be a warrior thing…
Anyway now I’ve got all of the possible class mounts, so that’s one huge goal checked off of my gaming goal list. It’s been fun seeing all the different class stories and the various mount questlines. I think the rogue mounts are my favorites, I just love the look of those ravens. The paladin quest was probably the best quest though, just for the sheer nostalgia factor. Now that I’m done with these I need to figure out some other silly goal to keep me busy for a while!
Blizzcon has come and gone and now it is time to settle in and think about all the new things that got revealed. Time to look at the things I listed last week and see how they match up with what was announced.
The things I wanted to see:
- More Naga. It looks like there might be more naga? Kul Tiras seems like a likely place to run into some. But there’s not the Azshara emphasis I was hoping for with the expansion story.
- Better handling of professions. I haven’t heard much one way or the other about professions, so I’ll have to reserve judgement on this one.
- Housing/ Guild Halls. This looks like it is still a no.
- More Puzzles. Seems likely.
The things I really didn’t want to see:
- Sylvanas or Jaina as a raid boss. Based on the expansion theme I am really nervous about this one.
- Amped up faction BS. They completely doubled down on this. I was so disappointed it made the rest of Blizzcon way less enjoyable for me.
- More endless grinds. Looks like the Heart of Azeroth is the new artifact weapon, but we’ll see how endless of a grind it becomes.
- Removed leveling game. This is the only point in this section that I feel good about. Level scaling in brackets for the whole world seems great.
Overall I’d say that the announcement of Battle for Azeroth was a disappointment for me. Of course I’ll end up playing it, I’ve been playing WoW for way too long to think that I’d miss an expansion launch even if I think I won’t like it. The launch cinematic looked amazing, I especially loved seeing the Banshee Queen go all actual banshee. But the amped up faction tension thing is a huge turn off. I want more ways to be able to play with my friends, not more barriers. If they let you play cross faction, join cross faction guilds, etc., then I’d be so much happier. I think the Horde and Alliance going to war at this point in the WoW story is incredibly stupid, but I’d put up with it if the devs said “sure the story is one of war, but mechanically you can still play with whoever you want”. Instead they doubled down. I hate it.
The PvP on every server thing doesn’t help. Some leveling zones are notorious for people trying to draw out world PvP by shutting down quest hubs. Sure, now you can level in a broader range of zones, but you also encourage people to do dumb things to fish for world PvP. I understand why they think they need to do this, but I still don’t like it.
About the only announcement I did get excited over was the Classic server announcement. I hope that they have the resources to move that project forward quickly. At this point I’m much more interested in a trip down memory lane than moving forward with the story they’re telling now.
With BlizzCon hype in full effect and only hours left before the big show, I can’t help but get swept up in all the excitement. We’re almost certain to get an announcement of a new WoW expansion, but what will it be? I don’t have any insider knowledge, and have mixed thoughts about what might be coming. What I do have are some ideas about what I do and don’t want to see in the next expansion.
4 Things I Really Want to See in the Next Expansion:
- More Naga. Playable naga even. I enjoyed the naga bits in Azsuna and always love getting more Azshara lore. It seems likely that Azshara is going to keep turning up, and I’ll be happy to see more naga around when she does.
- Better handling of professions. The devs had their hearts in the right place with Legion. I like the idea of having some quests along the way with professions. Where Legion professions fell down was in the huge amount of RNG for getting quest drops and recipes, and with the need to run dungeons and even mythics to progress. I’d like each profession to have a mini story told in a quest chain again, but no groups required. My 10,000 alts shouldn’t need to rely on darkmoon faire to skill up to max.
- Meaningfully customizable player and/or guild spaces. Housing. Guild Halls. Whatever you want to call it. Garrisons were okay but not customizable at all and very isolating. Class halls are a bit nicer, they’re much more flavorful but again not customizable in any meaningful cosmetic way. Give me a space where I can show off my achievements or those of my guild!
- Continuation of puzzles/riddles with cosmetic rewards. I still haven’t gotten the newest “riddle” mount yet, but I like the idea of these. Even though I’d never be able to figure out the answers on my own, I enjoy looking them up, learning about how they figured everything out, and going through the in-game scavenger hunt. I hope there’s more of these to come.
4 Things That Could Sour a New Expansion for Me:
- Sylvanas or Jaina as a raid boss. Both of these lore figures have been showing signs that things are changing for them. Both have had treatment at the hands of the story that has been “inconsistent” to put it mildly. I personally love Sylvanas and hate Jaina as characters, but neither of them deserve the Garrosh treatment. If either of these ladies ends up as a boss fight that might be the thing that makes me check out of WoW for good. The creative team can and should do better by these characters.
- Amped up faction tensions. I’m proudly “FOR THE HORDE” but I’d also just as soon ditch faction boundaries so I can play with my friends. The faction conflict in Legion in Stormheim felt stale and useless to me. The world is ending, it’s time to stop the petty faction bickering and band together. An expansion that puts renewed emphasis on faction divides will be a major disappointment to me.
- More emphasis on endless grinds. I loved the artifact weapons in Legion, right up until concordance became a thing. Keep the idea of class- or spec-specific story quests and gear. Ditch the endless slog of endgame grinding for one more 0.01% upgrade. I get satisfaction from feeling “finished” with a character for a patch. In Legion once I saw that there was no end in sight I checked out instead of signing up for the grind.
- No leveling game. Every expansion it seems like people predict “this will be the one that gets rid of leveling”. No. I enjoy the leveling experience. Heck Warlords, one of the worst expansions ever in my estimation, still had a pretty decent leveling story. Leveling forces a little bit of slowdown before the rush into engame group content. It also gives the devs breathing room to tell a big story plus plenty of smaller ones. Having lots of zones and stories also gives my alts something different to do when I’m leveling 12-15 characters at the end of an expansion. A WoW without levels is a WoW I’m not very interested in at all.
I was trying to make a list of 5 and 5 but just couldn’t come up with anything else that would really make or break a new expansion for me. And I think that’s a good thing. I’m long past the point of getting super excited or super angry about anything WoW throws at me, but I do still love the game and enjoy my time there. So no matter what the news looks like from BlizzCon, I expect I’ll be gearing up to play the next installment.
What is it about getting older that makes the months seem to go by in a blur? Probably the lack of sleep from playing too many games. Anyway it’s time to review my October goals and make some new ones for November.
October Goals in Review:
WoW: Level either my warrior or my horde monk to 60. Done! I did even better and got my warrior to 100 and got her artifact.
Get at least one more of the concordance pet/mount/toy rewards I’m missing. Done! I think I actually have all of the concordance rewards now, unless there’s one for warriors that I’m not aware of.
D3: Master the last Necromancer set dungeon. Nope. I didn’t get much D3 time in this month at all.
Legendary: Get a maxed-star card of every color. Done!
Destiny 2: Hit the level cap. Done!
WoW: Get the warrior to 110. This should be reasonable to do in a weekend, especially if I can catch some invasions and/or the darkmoon faire. Once I get her class mount I can call Legion “finished” as far as I’m concerned.
Destiny 2: Try the raid. I’m having a blast in D2 so far and I want to capitalize on the fact that so many of my friends are playing right now too. I still have no illusions about being hardcore or good at this game, but I’d like to at least see what a raid in Destiny looks like.
Diablo 3: Finish the last Necromancer set mastery I’m missing. I really do want to knock this out and put set dungeons behind me forever (until new classes or sets come along anyway).
Complete the baseline chapters of the Season 12 journey. I’m not really feeling D3 much right now but a new season starts soon and I want to try to get the cosmetic goodies during the initial rush like I usually do. There’s new wings this season and I don’t want to miss out on them!
That’s a very modest list for November, hopefully that will set me up for success!