Dec 16th 2009 5:14PM I think that the original lvl 80 heroics do not have a gear check. You should be able to run these straight out of 80 if you have been doing normal modes while leveling. Whether or not that is a smart thing to do is another question. My new lvl 80 mage was able to go straight into original lvl 80 heroics immediately upon dinging 80 and I only had some blues and a lot of greens equipped, with no additional gear in my bag. I did have a lock against heroic 5-man ToC and the new heroic dungeons. At the time, my Gear Score rating was hovering around 2600.
A few runs through normal ToC should get you geared up enough to go into heroic ToC. A few runs in there should get you into the new heroic dungeons, I would assume.
My suggestion would be to queue up for your favorite heroics from the orignal set and normal ToC. Get some ilvl 200 gear and enough badges to get a T9 piece. All the while, keep your eyes open for chances to run groups with guildies. This seems to be a step that a lot of people are forgetting - you can still get carried through content by guildies who would be more than happy to help out. This is still much faster than gearing up through the random dungeon system.
Also don't forget to get some crafted gear right as you ding 80, if you have the bankroll for the mats. Many guilds also have a stockpile of BoE epics stashed away in the guild bank. My guild currently has this equipment reserved for mains only, but I am yet to see a main need this gear, so some bargaining can probably be had.
Everyone is so psyched up about badge gear and the random dungeon system that they seem to have forgotten that there are still better ways to gear up. Badges and random dungeons are the simplest, newest and shiniest way, but not necessarily the best. This could probably even stand to have a full write-up done on wow.com, as there is a lot of potential content for such a subject.
Nov 30th 2009 4:09PM The whole point of a casual, social guild is that you don't NEED the guild, you prefer it for the social aspect. Hardmodes are actually a very small percentage of the achievement points you can get. Think of all the fun you could have getting the holiday meta achievements with a group of people that you have fun playing with, without the pressure of getting it done before raid time. Or instead of spamming guild chat with questions about which bracers you should be wearing, asking about that cute new vanity pet that you saw in Dalaran.
Wrath created a different class of casual. Just as they opened up raiding to casual players, they created a whole slew of achievements to point out the casual gameplay themes that already existed while also adding more casual play elements that are well "below" the raiding curve.
The whole reason my GF won't join a guild right now is because of the elitist attitude that any achievement worth having requires 25 people working together flawlessly and the pressure that can come with that. She likes farming for vanity pets and mounts. If you put her in a group of people clearing Strat repeatedly for the Baron mount, and let her squeal in fear at the spiders to her hearts content, and said, "Hey, just spam Rain of Fire on my head," She'd love it. No one critiquing her gear or her build. No one needing her to be online at a certain time (because they are easy and they don't NEED her to be there at the top of her game).
The obvious slack-jawed answer to this is to tell her to go play Hello-Kitty or Pokemon crap. But she likes WoW. And WoW has many elements that cater specifically to her playstyle. She can't be alone in this. Why not have a guild for it?
Nov 30th 2009 1:20PM Would the new answer to "casual PvE" guild be an achievement-based guild, instead of a "casual raiding" guild? Achievements can be a lot of fun in a group setting. You can "schedule" achievement goals much more loosely than a raid. You can still have a sense of accomplishment and a social atmosphere, and you don't ever have to get a certain number of people online at the same time, nor do you have to leave anyone out at any time. There is no pressure on people to meet a certain skill standard (mostly), and group composition is typically unimportant.
I'm kind of shocked I haven't seen anyone try this. Has anyone ever heard of this?
Nov 30th 2009 12:40PM Glyph of Eternal Water - When it drops, absolutely a glyph for solo leveling. The freeze is an "Oh S***" button in PvE anyhow. More meat for baddies to hit on and more damage from the extra mini frostbolts being cast is extremely valuable. But it isn't in play right now, so I understand it not being mentioned here.
Enduring Winter - I agree and my frost spec only has one point here. For end game, I don't see mages take any points in this talent. 3/3 is overkill, IMO.
Fingers of Frost - No, it is not the same chance. They roll independently. It is annoying to see them proc at the same time, as you essentially "lose" a proc unless you have another target to cast at that isn't frozen. Because it is so annoying, those double procs are the ones that you notice more often. 15% for freeze, 15% for fingers, I think the math means that about 1 in every 50 casts will proc both. Seems like it happens a lot more often than that, but that is just because it is that annoying.
Water levels - bleh. Once you get mage armor, how often to you drink, really? This problem doesn't seem to exist at Northrend levels.
Mage armor - Absolutely the armor of choice through old world, once you have it. Outland you start not having mana problems, ever, with the itemization, so you tend to go back to frost. Northrend use Molten. BoAs don't really change that, I don't think.
Oh, and in Northrend, spec Arcane. You'll thank me later.
Nov 30th 2009 12:26PM I have been keeping pace with the leveling guides pretty well, actually. My mage alt is now lvl 72, but I'm taking a slightly different leveling route:
1) Dailies early and often - you get rep that you are going to need later anyhow, and the XP return is just as good as normal quests. But dailies are designed (mostly) to be quick and painless.
2) Starting zones are just a stepping stone to the Wrathgate event - No reason to not mention this questline. It is a pretty much mandatory for anyone's first toon, and it should be done on every alt if for no other reason than coolness. I did a Nexus run and I can definitely make the argument that the starting zones should be based entirely on getting the dungeon quests and doing those dungeons. At lvl 71/72, I jumped straight to Dragonblight.
3) Nessingwary/Ampitheatre - After Dragonblight and before the final push, these are my only two big goals for my mage.
4) 76/77 and on - The push to the end game will be almost entirely focused on the Icecrown quests opening up the ebon blade dailies, opening up the Hodir dailies, and then doing dailies until my eyes bleed. I did this on my priest alt and the last three levels screamed by. Add in some Wintergrasp dailies for flavor. Even though my mage has inscription, I may do the Hodir dailies because I am so used to them and they don't take me very long at all. Essentially you end up with between 10-20 dailies budgeted to be done every day that you play. Those dailies go by fast, too. Use flight paths and get your other stuff done while traveling so you aren't wasting your travel time. Removing travel time, you probably burn through your allotment of dailies in 90 minutes or so, possibly less.
Hopefully, when you hit 80, you can hop from quartermaster to quartermaster and get at least revered level gear from each one. As a mage, I'm guessing that just this gear should put you doing at least 1500-1800 dps. I know there are people who disagree, but this is the range for heroic dungeons. It was the range when Wrath launched, and it is still the range. If anything, that requirement is lower because you are likely to have better geared players in your groups, so you don't have to contribute as much. 2k dps was the cut for Naxx, but no one has to go to Naxx anymore.
Buy emblem gear, get stuff gemmed and enchanted, and you'll be breaking 6k dps in no time.
Nov 24th 2009 1:34PM Rollin' rollin' rollin'. Keep that free stuff rollin'. . .
This, for me at least, is the least desirable of what they have offered so far, but I wouldn't turn it down.
Nov 23rd 2009 2:03PM Sure, why not?
Nov 23rd 2009 11:09AM In for one!
Nov 8th 2009 3:58AM This is not always true. It certainly isn't ideal to be x3 or lower in a certain bracket, but you can be effective (to a certain extent) if and only if you know what value you can bring at that level.
I don't think any flag runner would turn down any healer, even a very low level one, while trying to run the flag. Priests bubbles and Psycic Screams are very worth while, no matter what number you level ends in. Dispels can also be a godsend, and even holy nova to find rogues while on D can have use.
Frost mages are still very effective at CC at lower levels of brackets. Yes, you have a high chance of missing and a high probability of dying, but you can provide value on D in WSG and in supporting a flag carrier. Do not, under any circumstances, forget to use counterspell, remove curse, and polymorph. All three are amazingly effective regardless of how you stack up to the bracket.
Other healers can be effective, much like priests can (don't forget entangling roots, and Shamans have lots of totems that can be a pain in PvP). Rangers will always be a PITA in the lower brackets (until 50-59 bracket, when DKs start appearing). If you are an herbalist, use your instant cast heal over time, especially if you are low on stam. Its a huge, huge burst (I cast it right before I ice block).
Most importantly, if you are under leveled for your bracket, play exactly how you would if you were undergeared - do not run around alone, or you will die. Expect to die, often. Worry more about CC and helping your teammates survive. It is pointless to try to lead the BG in damage done, and it is pointless to try to stay alive the whole time. Be a distraction and piss the other team off. Make them hunt you down. The more time they spend killing you, the less time they are spending on the flag carrier.
Nov 8th 2009 3:43AM Also, if for some reason you haven't hit Gadzetstan yet, the scrolls will often port you right into the middle of the little arena there, as well, making it easy to get the flight path and start questing there at lvl 41. This is also how I chose to get to the Shimmering flats for a mage quest from Tabitha, as Tanaris is closer to that quest point than Thousand Needles.