Monthly Archives: May 2012

#71 Teach a man to rant and you will find out why he won’t fish

I  have played continuously through Cataclysm and throughout the sixteen months of questing, exploring, and raiding I have one noticeable complaint about the expansion, the poor implication of the daily fishing quests.

Fishing dailies was added in Burning Crusade and continued with every expansion and I enjoyed all of the dailies offered in Shattrath and Dalaran, but in Cataclysm I stopped finding motivation to complete the quest (even in the beginning of the expansion’s life cycle).

Looking back, I found why I never liked doing the fishing dailies in Stromwind it was because I was not actually fishing up anything good.

I have launched countless assaults on the Ice Crown Citadel and killed Deathwing. Why am I asked to fish up a locket in a city?


In Burning Crusade and in Wrath, the fishing dailies sends you all around the current continent doing odd deeds for the quest giver. In Cataclysm the quest doesn’t take you anywhere, they just ask you to move around the city fishing in low-level waters .

And because I was fishing in low-level waters I did not get the unintentional benefit of fishing up relevant fishes to use for that expansion’s cooking recipes.

I remember completing the quest Dangerously Delicious and flying out of Wintergrasp with enough fish to cooks some additional fish feasts for that week’s raid.

In Cataclysm there was no quest reason for going to Twilight Highlands to fish there, turned Cataclysm‘s fishing into a RNG based grind. As I experienced with Archaeology, if there is no gameplay reason to do something I will avoid that aspect of gameplay like the plague.

I only reached my archaeology cap because there was a quest in Drakmoon Faire that told to be do something related tho this time sink

I do understand why the Cataclysm fishing daily was not as good as the other fishing dailies. With the revamping of the old content, it would not seem efficient to add two different cooking/fishing dailies for the leveling characters and other set of dailies for the 85 players.

I haven’t been beta for quite a while, so I don’t know if there is any fishing dailies added yet or see what types of quests are in the Mist of Pandaria fishing quests but I hope, for the sake of my cooking, that some of the quests actually involve fishing in Pandaria.

I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

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#70 Mount Catch up

Coming back from Pokemon week, as expected, there was some Mist of Pandaria news that was datamined from the beta.

Luckily the news was nothing too major (I was honestly expecting a release date to be announced) just the announcement of the pandarian’s racial mounts and the introduction of another gold sink that is going to be in Mist of Pandaria, besides of the Jewel Crafter mounts.

Blizzard has announced the racial mounts for Pandarians, the new mounts are going to be dragon turtles.

Huh, I thought that it was going to be yaks, it would be more fitting for a docile way of life. These mounts are pretty awesome, the design looks like these turtles are ready for the Alliance-Horde war.

My question for this is can my Draenei mage buy the mounts from a Pandaria quartermaster in the capital cities? or will these only be exclusively sold on the starter island?

The next bit of mount news is there some data miners have found another gold sink in Mist of Pandaria, the Mighty Grand Expedition Yak Mount.

And be the envy of my friends I shall be.
Video: to MMOChampion for this info. 

The appeal of this mount is on this yak has a reforging merchant as a passenger that lets you, or your raid, reforge your gear on the fly.

I don’t see the appeal of a reforger since, at least for me, I only reforge when I’m in the city buying gems and enchantments for my gear. It seems that high-end gear is too complex to be just be reforged.

This mount, although no official price for it but it seems to be going for the price of 60k gold.

You know what I say to that? chump change I have 91 thousand gold sitting on my mage and it’s looking for some justification to waste gold.

I would have more gold if I had the motivation.

Now the only problem I have is, “What over priced mount to buy first? The jeweled panthers or the Yak?”

While both have their pros and cons (I don’t use reforge that much, and the JC mounts are just reskins of existing cats)

I think that I am going to go for the epic yak mount first, since that is a fixed price, set by the NPC. and it could be brought down by a possible reputation discount, or at least the guild reward perk.

I’ll try to build the JC mounts a bit later in the expansion, when the player market subsided from the inflation of new good entering the market.

I learned that lesson the hard way when I was to make the Sandstone Drake back in January of last year and I was wounded up buying truegold for a little over 1k gold and the potions for hundreds on the AH.

Although that was during a time when I was in between guilds so I did not have the luxury of calling on an alchemy  guildie to buy the potions from at wholesale prices.

I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays


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#69 Every WoW expansion will suck…

(Finishing up Pokemon week, I’m going to change things up a bit and teach a lesson to the players of Warcraft not to the company)

During the past few week I did something that I usually never do, go read some World of Warcraft and Pokemon forums.

While reading some ‘interesting’ comments, I noticed a trend that appears in both WoW and Pokemon fans. The idea that expansion X, or in Pokemon terms Pokemon game X, was the best and all other following games was terrible by comparison.

In WoW commenters will say that the best expansion is usually the Burning Crusade or Vanilla while Pokemon’s best game is Pokemon Red and Blue. I attribute this to the rose-colored glasses of nostalgia. I would like to set the record straight by  quoting the title of this post, that every single WoW expansion and Pokemon game will suck, compared to the predecessor.

With any addition to the game there have always be improvements to the gameplay’s quality of life for the player, changes that most people do not want to lose if you asked them.

With Pokemon the Red and Blue games were good but nowhere near the perfection that nostalgic players would claim.

It took the next addition of the Pokemon games (Silver and Gold) to add some gameplay that was sorely missed in the first generation. Along with more Pokemon the new games had days and night times, a better Pokemon daycare, held items and improved color pallets and Pokemon designs.

Try to even guess what that Pokemon is

Let us not forget the bugs that Pokemon Silver and Gold fixed in their game

It’s a good read

With Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire (the third generation of Pokemon) the game now added again, improved graphics, and the introduction to the double battle mechanics and as mentioned in monday’s post, the addition of Pokemon passive abilities and weather conditions in battles.

This trend continued with Diamond/Pearl (Gen. VI) and Pokemon Black and White (Gen. V), like cut scenes and healing halfway through a difficult caves.

The same holds true for WoW.

Does anyone really want to go back to a time in WoW where you needed to pug 39 other players to go to a raid that had non-existent boss mechanics? With Priests and Druids being broken to the point they can be useful when they are in a healing spec, and a terrible gold economy?

No? then Vanilla WoW is not for you.

Ok, what about the awesome Burning Crusade expansion sure there was slightly improved quest lines, a deceased in the required number of people to take down a raid boss, and lest us forget the flying mount.

But lets not forget about the ridiculous to get attuned for the heroics and raids.

Makes your head dizzy huh?

In Burning Crusade, we still have no easy way to get people together for the heroic/raid. We still have to gather the people, we have to fly there, and no way to replace members mid dungeon run. Also the reputation grind was still grinding thousands of enemies and hundreds of turn-in quests. Do you want to an expansion with new factions that required more pointless grinding?

No? then less move on to the Wrath of the Lich King.

Alright so we ruled out Vanilla and Burning Crusade, what about Wrath?  Well in Wrath Blizzard gets props for breaking up raids into a ten and a twenty-five man sizes but the getter gear was always in the twenty-five raids, penalizing smaller guilds who could not get that many people together online at the same time. Also the talent trees where getting out of hand with the amount of bloat in each spec, and there was no ingame rewards for guild participation. And although Wrath had more land to fly around in, and better phased quests, the old Azeroth content started to look very dated by comparison. A problem with the phasing is it always isolates you from the world for the roleplaying cut scenes

So lets move one to the current expansion, Cataclysm.

Now we have Cataclysm, with revamped Azeroth and flying throughout almost all of the world. We also have a much more toned down talent tree system and equal loot tables for both ten and twenty-five man raid groups, which makes my guild especially happy for since now Cata we have actually got a few legendaries.

So what was wrong with Cataclysm?

Archaeology was still very rough, and Blizzard did not add any new craftable weapons with each patch so any Archaeology epics you would  be obsolete with just one run of Raid finder. Blizzard also learned that players want more end game quests to complete by themselves, and the new world was now filled with instanced locations where two friends could not see each other if one completed the quest chain before the other.

So now lets look at Mist of Pandaria and see how much better it is than Catclysm.

With Mist of Pandaria now NPC appears and triggers conversations with you or other NPCs without you being teleported to a separated instance, so I can now help my friend with a Jade Forest quest when I’m already level capped . And Blizzard now learned what to improve for end game time sinks. Archaeology, something added in Cata, is now greatly improved with smaller dig sites and hostile disturbed spirits that drops additional fragments and the more interactive time sink with Pet Battles.

What I’m trying to say is that in both Pokemon and WoW each previous games was flawed in some say that was improved with the next installment. Each game also had quality of live improvements that no reasonable player would demand to be taken out improved graphics, double battles and abilities for Pokemon and  flying mounts, LFG, Mass rez for World of Warcraft

I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays


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#68 Expanding into different games

Welcome back to Be MOP’s Pokemon week, this is where I find lessons where Blizzard can learn from the Pokemon company.

Monday I warned Blizzard about how much complexity is in a current Pokemon Battle. Now I am going to talk about the opportunity for Blizzard to produce non-canon games with their franchise.

Pokemon has done a excellent job marketing their Intellectual Property. Over the 20 years the Pokemon brand has been on everything from pencils, comicbooks, T-shirts, to bedsheets.

While Blizzard’s games are too mature for them to come out with Diablo themed Bed sheets and feetie Pajamas with a straight face. (Although I know there will be several people who would buy it) They can take a page out of the Pokemon company and start making spin-off games.

Pokemon has created dozens of  video games that has nothing to do with the main story of the Game boy game’s main story but is still connected to Pokemon in some way. They have created spin-off games like Pokemon Pinball (two different games), Pokemon the Trading Card Game the video game, Pokemon Educational games, and they even created a few dungeon crawling games.

Yes, every game that I just mentioned are games that I have played

This is what Blizzard should try to do for their next project, produce simple games that is not connected to the main stories of Diablo, StarCraft, or Warcraft but still have those character from each universe.

We see Blizzard branch out to other type of games they are already moving that way with the introduction of the Pet Battle, their hope of porting Diablo 3 to the console, and Blizzard All Star (their Dota game)

As a league of Legends player I am excited to play this game

I would like to encourage Blizzard to make more spin-off games, I doubt that any player would not want to see more games that take place in the Starcraft, Diablo or Warcraft universe where you play someone who is not that important who helps saves a certain historic fights or change the tide of a war.

It would be a good excuse to continue the Warcraft World, or go back and retell an important part of the lore without making a Warcraft 4 or a big WoW content patch. These games also have the added benefit of keeping the fans occupied between “official” game releases.


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays


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#67 Pokemon Week!

With Diablo 3 being released last week I highly doubt that there will be no new Mist of Pandaria news for a few weeks. (watch that come around and bite me in the ass come latter in the week) I decided that I am going to bring back an idea that I had during spring break, a week of blog posts with a continuing topic

Last time was focused on what Blizzard can learn from the Doctor Who show, and this week is going to be what Blizzard can learn from the Pokemon franchise.

What a coincidence, a new Pokemon game will also be released in the US in the next few months…

Today’s topic is what Blizzard can learn from Pokemon about the level of complexity that players can and will find in their turn based strategy games.

With Pokemon, in the old 8-bit Red and Blue games when two players battled there was not that much complexities to the fight. The strategy was to use moves that was weak to the enemy Pokemon or at least use same types moves as your Pokemon to get the Same Type Attack Bonus. That was it Pokemon Red and Blue had no meta/high-end number crunching math for the PvP.

Oh, nostalgia

As new installments of the games came out the game designers added more layers of gameplay to each one. Silver/Gold had the ability for Pokemon to hold items plus they added a daycare where Pokemon could make eggs, meaning that you could have more than one rare Pokemon and breed Pokemon with moves that would would not be able to learn on their own.

In the next game (Ruby and Sapphire) the game added Pokemon passive abilities and Pokemon natures, when the personalities of Pokemon influence what Stats gets increased more with each level up.

Now this brought Pokemon battles to it’s deepest in terms of complexities there are now websites that have crunched out what combination of move sets, abilities, natures and items for each Pokemon to have them be the most optional. (See People will spend hours of gameplay just to get the right Pokemon combination to have built just one Pokemon for their competitive Pokemon team.

There are national tournaments with huge cash prizes

All this math and hard work for a children’s video game

The point of that I’m trying to get across is that Blizzard should be wary about the PetBattle system, because there will be people who dedicate their gameplay time to find the optimal combination to get the Pet team that is just slightly better than the average player

While blizzard has encountered Min-Maxers in PvE and PvP, they are going to have to remember that now they are going to give some extra work time to balance the pet battle games. With a poor implementation of Pet Battle System we might see an end game where players are forced to pick one out of a handful of ‘the best’ cookie cutter team builds in order to stand a chance next to players who have already chosen other cookie cutter builds, which is what Blizzard is trying to move away from in these past two expansions.


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays


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#66 A Blast from the past

Today’s post I want to try something different, instead of writing about my adventures in Warcraft will be showing you some of my favorite screenshots that I have collected from my years of playing. Think of it as a clip show for a blog.


This was a screenshot of me in my current guild after we just downed out first boss in Cataclysm. I remember spending weeks on this boss, wipe after wipe after wipe once we finally killed him it was the first sign that I was becoming a current tier raider.  (1/23/11)

Back when I was a Horde member, my mage was an Undead and I remember having so much fun with the Flamestrike spell. Casting it in several odd placed in main Horde cities (2/16/09)

I took this picture as soon as I got the What A Long, Strange Trip It’s Been meta-meat achievement. It took me two years to get this mount because I missed one elder in a dungeon that disqualified me from getting the Elder title. (2/18/10)


A lucky screenshot of my Guild’s raid on Valiona and Theralion. I like this screenshot so much that I had as wallpaper for my phone for months. It was a surprise that I kept up my Dps when i was taking so many pictures. (3/4/11)


Back in my PvP days there was this one particularly long Alterac Valley battleground, where the Alliance successfully summoned Ivus the Forest Lord.  I was shocked that there was this aspect of the battleground that I never saw before that day. (9/18/08)


This was my first official epic armor collection, I did so much PvP in Burning Crusade I was able to buy the majority of this set once I dinged 70. I’m on a quest now to get this tier set back on my mage again for Transmog. (10/11/08)


This one is by far one of my best screenshot, I took this on my Undead when an Alliance raid was trying to kill Sylvanas for the Black Bear mount. I was extremely lucky to get her in that light and in that…..interesting pose.  (1/11/09)

Next week I’m going back to writing, but until then have a great weekend!


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

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#65 This post is NOT about Diablo 3

The title’s correct, I am not going to mention anything about Blizzard’s newest game that was released yesterday, I just put it in the title to get some extra traffic.

This picture is here just to further my point

By the way, the picture on the right is my Battletag. Feel free to add me, I will be actively playing  over the summer

Instead I’m going to talk about solo end game content that will be present in Mist of Pandaria.

One of the criticisms that Cataclysm had been that there was nothing to do, by yourself, once you hit level 85.

The Cata quests were designed that you would reach the appropriate level requirement once you complete the main, and in some zones, the only story of that area. The problem was occurred when you finished Twilight Highlands, hit level 85 and there was no more level 84-85 quests to complete (going back and questing in the other Cata starting zone does not count)

While in Wrath, when I hit level cap there was still several quest chains that I didn’t even know about. I only completed the Lich King’s heart and half of the boat quests when I went back there for the Loremaster Achievement. Plus I chose Ice Crown over Storm Peaks for my questing experience, so I also had ¾ of Storm Peaks to explore as well.

Blizzard learned from Cata when building Mist of Pandaria. There’s not one main story, but several other quest chains

It seems that the zones are saturated with quests (which is never a bad thing) When I quested through the Jade Forest I tried to get through all of the quests before moving on. Even though all the quests before moving on, but even through I ended the main story there was still a few quest chains that I didn’t get to

I still have a quest chain in the lower right hand corner.

In the Valley of the Four winds, I focused more on the Chen Stormstout and LiLi quests, because it was the main quests. As I received the breadcrumb to go to the next zone I had even more uncompleted quests than in the Jade Forest.

There was a whole bunch of quests at Halfhill that I completely ingored

At the rate that I’m leveling, once I hit level 90, there will be plenty of solo-able quests to complete when I want to kill time or want some extra gold at max level.

Which is great because now I do not have to rely on archaeology or the repetitive dailies to burn time in Heroic Dungeon queues….Atleast for the first few weeks of max level


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the lead up to the next World of Warcraft expansion with my own reflections about the last dying moments of the Catalysm’s Twilight Hour as we look into the Mist of the new day. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

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