As always there is the good, the bad, and the ugly. This patch release was no exception.
The game was up when I got home from work, so as far as I am concerned, all was well in the gaming world. There were no disconnections, no quest errors, no bugs, and only two or three evade mobs, which is actually exceptional if you ask me for a patch this size.
I had no addon issues, even with out of date addons being loaded. I had a few spikes of lag for no more than 3 seconds each but in the over all the release was problem free. When it comes to good thing, this is the number one good thing everyone wants to hear. No real issues with release.
Main Land Rares:
The new rares on the main land are pretty cool. Even with many packs of people flying around looking for them I was able to find my fair share. Was able to get the achievement for 5 riders and 10 of the others and many other kills along the way with ease.
Please take note: These are not shared kills, which could be confusing being we were told 5.2 rares where shared and these are 5.2 rares and these are not shared.
The regular main land rares are quite easy to solo. At least for a hunter. As long as you know how to move from junk on the ground, can misdirect the scarabs if that mob has them and you kite the spirit you will not have a problem at all. The mob can not kill your pet if you keep mend pet rolling, but the spirit can, even if the pet is in tank spec. So multi when the spirit comes and let it chase you. Do not even bother trying to kill it, it does not drop loot and is a waste of time because it despawns on its own in time.
The mounted main land rares are another story. A little more gear, or someone all heroic geared, might be able to solo them no problem. For me, I had the occasional issue. I would grab them waiting for my friends to get there, was in a group with two others most of the time, and could keep it going until they got there. Even got one to 50% by myself which means I "could" solo it, but right now, why would you if you can down it so much faster with another person or two. Be careful when doing the main land mounted ones solo, while I think it can be done, it is a lot harder and the spirit loves to get behind your pet and one shot it, which will mean instant issues for you. So if you want to keep that from happening, two things are required. Blink strike will assure the spirit will be in front of your pet if you use it instantly when it spawns, as it seems to spawn behind your pet and the blink strike will turn your pet around, and you need to pick up the spirit ASAP. I did not notice the spirit ever getting behind the pet on the normal main land ones, but the mounted ones it seemed to come from the back each time. Could just be a coincidence. I killed about 10 of the mounted ones with no mount drop love.
As a side note, do not take the fact we easily 3 manned the mounted rares to mean they are easy. I solo a lot and had two people with me that are good players, so it was super easy for the three of us without a death ever from any of us, but we watched groups of 5 or more die, once even 8 horde on it wiped and they had a tank and two healers, so they can be deadly if you do not have decent reactions, do not kite or CC spirits, or are not skilled at least at a minimal level. I think that is why I was able to get so many of them in such a short time. Everyone was wiping to them over and over except us three.
Isle of Giants:
This place rocks. The appropriate amount of scary shit you might want to avoid unless in a decent sized group and lots of little stuff a hunter could solo. Not to mention the tome to tame direhorns is here and so are the direhorns themselves.
The small dinos should be capable of being soloed by nearly everyone, do not let the elite tag scare you much. Just pay attention to the casting and avoid the avoidable. The medium ones might be an issue for most. I managed one solo but it did require me reviving my pet a few times and some fancy footwork here and there. I imagine with a little more gear they will be easy too. The big ones I would not even try solo if I were you unless you really want a challenge. They do a large AoE damage that will whittle you down and I do not think we can out DPS it and as hunters can surely not out heal it.
The dinomancers, the ones that drop the book hunters need to learn to tame the direhorns as well as the four new battle pets are super easy. Just make sure to interrupt the heal and they are not a problem. I was able to solo four at the same time, could have even taken more if there were more there. Just single target them, make sure to keep mend pet up, and interrupt that heal and they go down fast enough.
I killed dozens of them and did not see a book drop for the tame but I did manage to get all four of the battle pets that drop from them already. I am also on my way to 9,999 bones, over 200 now, so it might be a while, but that is one of the thing I like about the island. It gives me something to aim for and I like that. A set goal and a set place to grind the items needed for that goal. Better than waiting on random drops for things any day. I see me spending a lot of time here.
In my time there with friends we killed 100s of things, only one egg dropped for the mount. It is a white item, so whoevers loot it is will get it, it can not be rolled on and it can not be traded even if you are in a group with someone that looted it. Just as a word of notice. This little bit, the white mount egg, is the one bad I would say on the island. It should be at least green so it can be rolled on when in a group.
The reputations tab looks a lot better than I was expecting it too. The little arrows telling you what you get a bonus for is simple and the star that you can click to champion something was nice. Simple enough, for the people that know what it all means. So good for me, but for people that do not understand what all that means this could easily fall into the ugly category. If people see that and do not know what any of it mean, it is all just clutter to them.
There are 12 new lorewalker items we can find. Did you know that? Well, I didn't. I was pleasantly surprised when I saw that. I only ran across 4 of them but noticed there are three new achievements related to them with 4 each which means there are 12 out there. Nice to see a small continuation of this in the patch. This is the type of thing I meant when I was talking about redefining warcraft yesterday. Keeping up with the little stuff. That is good and this was unexpected and I liked seeing it a lot. Now if only we could actually have a second to read any of this stuff without getting attacked.
Throne of Thunder:
We did not even attempt any bosses. Only had seven raiders on for some odd reason. Only one of them was a tank and none were healers. So we tried trash with one person in a really crappy ungemmed and unenchanted off spec healing set. We wiped on the trash twice, but with that said, we did clear it all.
So you can do trash with one half healer, one tank and 5 over 100K DPS. That is kind of good news, so if you want to grind up to friendly before the LFR comes out to maximized your gain from bosses, go for it, the trash seems simple enough for competent players but I can see random trade people wiping on it. It will only take a few runs to get to friendly too.
Can't really say too much on it because we did not try to one tank and one heal the boss, but the trash was surely a lot of fun doing it that way.
Isle of Thunder Rares:
I was so excited for these. Rares that were group loot, dropped valor and stones that could summon more group elite mobs. It had all the makings of what could be amazing fun for the island, until I tried it in practice.
In a move that could only be called bullshit you can only loot one of these per day. For someone like myself that means being I want to pet from the mechanical one I actually need to make sure that is the one I hit first each day or I can not get the pet from it. If I accidentally hit another, I am now on that ones loot table for the day. At least you can get achievement credit for more than one per day, but when it comes to loot, I have zero choice now, I have to attack the mechanical one every day first. No options what so ever.
I think this is a major bullshit move on blizzards part. If you are going to offer group loot, offer it on all of them. Not just one per day. Because now you are pushing people even more so to grief others. Where is their desire to help someone else with theirs if they will not get anything from it? Just tag it to mess with them and move along, you can get nothing from it if you already killed one. Bad move blizzard, really really really bad move blizzard. I can not even express how much I think this is a bad move. Not only is it bad, but it actually makes griefing worse, not better. It is worse than bad, it is bullshit.
*Note: Some say this is not intended and you are supposed to be able to get loot off of each kill. Some ideas on how you could loot is to walk far away and then come back and you can get loot, did not work for me. And to kill another mob in the area and get the rares loot with AoE looting, did not work for me. So it might just be a bug. So bug or bullshit, either way, it is a bad part of the release.*
I file this under bad only because of who I am, a rare hunter, and what I did yesterday, get a ton of those reputation tokens. We needed other ways to boost reputation but these tokens that drop off the new main land rares are a little much. As a group we got over 100 of them yesterday. If I continue rare hunting I will have 11 characters with all reputations maxed out in no time.
A little to much blizzard? I think so. 250 per token would have been more reasonable in my opinion.
Now, I said I file it under bad, but over all it could very well be good. Not everyone will be a rare killer like me. Not everyone will end up with more than they know what to do with. Most people might get one or two reputation tokens a week at most. And in that case, I guess this is good. Just for me, not so much as I am a grinder. Either way, thanks to them and the new dungeon rep and farm rep my healers will never need to do a quest again, at least for the four original gear factions. I do still think that 1000 per token is a bit much however.
The fact that it is not there from day one is the bad, or could be looked at it from that perspective. I know I look at it that way. Heroic raiders clear normal first then go to heroic the week after. Normal raiders do LFR first then normal after. It makes no sense to have normal open, but not the stepping stone normal raiders use before normals. And then looking at the raid schedule and seeing it will be 5 weeks before it is all out LFR wise makes you think that blizzard has lost touch with the player base that is not heroic progression.
Personally I do not see us getting anything down this week because I do not think we are going to try it this week. But it still would have been nice to get into the LFR so everyone could see it and get an idea of the layout. It makes it a lot easier for me to explain fights too.
So for my guild, a normal mode guild, I don't see us doing much of anything until the LFR is out next week and it would have been nice if it were out yesterday so we can raid it tonight like we always do and people had the chance to take a look at some of the mechanics in a watered down version. Another one of the bad ideas from blizzard. They need to learn that easy mode comes first and then gets harder. That means, if anything, LFR should be released first. Logic, blizzard needs you to stage an intervention.
ugly of this patch is the same ugly of every patch in the history of
this and every other game that has ever been out there of this type on
patch day. Waiting forever for respawns. Even on a smaller server like
I did it, twice I hit a bottleneck, twice I needed to spend at least a
half hour waiting around for stuff to spawn. Can't really file this one
under good or bad, it is just the way things are, ugly on patch day.
Mob Spawns (part 2):
in other areas the mobs spawn almost as you kill them meaning the area
is constantly packed. It is nearly impossible to get away from mobs in
some places. Thank god for being a hunter, I kept walking away from
these areas until I could find a nice place to dismiss my pet and feign
death so I could continue along. I guess for non hunters they will need
to do the same things, but without the feign death. They will need to
walk to a safer place and finish off the mobs on them before they can
move again. I still think blizzard has a long way to go with balancing
things. They need to write some type of code that checks mobs around,
how many people are on the quest, and what is needed in an area so ugly 1
and ugly 2 aren't quite so ugly.
good, not bad, just ugly. The island is cluttered and would really
have had a better feel if they just made it a little bigger and opened
it up some. As it is, I can see traveling on the island being quite an
issue as time goes on and less people are doing it. Being it is so
compact people might find themselves overwhelmed pretty fast. But the real ugly is that people will get overwhelmed so fast in some areas and could go along forever without seeing a mob in others. Just an ugly layout there.
is a good and bad part to these babies, but the ugly is that there is
no consistency with them. Some of the rares are shared, some are not.
Also the group quest mobs still only give loot to the person that was
lucky enough to loot it first. Nice try at fixing some of the issues
blizzard, but unless you are really going to fix it, and really add any
consistency to it as in making them all shared or all not, it is just an
There are parts I have not even commented on. The gold grab scenario, the farm being ours, the quest line, the elite pet battles, the new pets on the new island. So much more. But that is because at the moment, I have either not delved into that area to come to a impulsive conclusion of good, bad or ugly, or I have no opinion on it as of now. Not everything leaves you with a first impression worth mentioning. For the things I did not mention, like the gold grab scenario, I have not decided on it yet. Or the elite pet battles, I have not experienced it yet. Either way, those where the first impression I thought worth sharing.
Group Quest S03E13: Telling our own stories
9 hours ago