Thursday, December 13, 2007

Deconstructing the Guild

You’ve all heard about my guild issues in the recent past. How we’ve had some people leave and had to kick some people out. The departure of one of our main guild officers and his return; it’s really been an interesting couple of months for Divine Forsaken. While I continue to reach 70 (Ding’d 68 last night) and my brother has already hit 70, the structure around us continues to change.

The group that left us a couple of weeks for an end game guild seemed to run into a snag. From what I understand they did indeed join a raid guild…for about three days. After which, it seems, both sides came to the conclusion that it wasn’t the best fit for either of them. So those that left made a new guild. Good for them actually, I was impressed that they would rather work on their own than have to work under the auspice of another group they don’t entirely agree with.

At the same time DF came to its own conclusion, we’re just going to relax. Literally we’re not going to worry about end game content at this time and just have fun with the game again. Enjoy playing with our friends and remember what it is we play WOW for, to have fun! Understandably some people get wrapped up into Epic gear and making their toon the best that it can be but honestly, it’s just a game. For me the thrill has always been reaching the pinnacle in levels. That’s why I have as many alts as I do, because for me it’s about getting to 70. Once I’m there, meh. I enjoy being a high level and farming gold and such but that’s all that toon is now, a farmer. He’ll be farming supplies, gold and various other things for my low level toon.

So in an officer meeting this week, Monday to be exact, the ground work was set for us to just enjoy ourselves for a while. Give Kara a break and remember what makes us, us.

Unfortunately this happened at the same time that the raiders who left our guild started to recruit from our guild. The two things met in the middle and we’ve lost a few other members of the guild to this new raiding team. My question is, if they liked playing with the guildies so much, why didn’t they just stay? They could have easily led a Gruul’s Lair group from our banner. There were enough 70s to do that with. Why leave? That’s a question that I don’t know that I’ll ever get an answer to really. No one’s going to sit and tell me, “well the thing of it is…”

I’m okay with that.

There was one person that left that I’m shocked to see leave and still unwilling to believe it to be true. Darkzealot came back into DF with much fanfare. When the guild decided that it was time to put end game content on the backburner….he left and joined the new raiding guild. The same people that he condemned for leaving, the same people that made him want to quit WoW are now his guild mates. I don’t understand that one. How can you go from condemning someone to joining their ranks in the passing of a week?

I know that I’ve told you that DF is my guild and I think I explained to you that it’s a gaming Community. So he’s still part of the community, he plays other games with us and still works with us but not in WoW. So it’s not really a betrayal. He’s not leaving us completely but he’s desperate to see end game content as much as the other guys in that guild are.

I don’t see the dram, but that’s just me.

In any event, our guild is still big. We might not have as many 70s as we did at the beginning of the month but we’ve got some good players working their way up to that apex and when they reach it, DF will raid again. We’ll be more prepared for what lays ahead.

For now, Luciel is 2 levels away from 70, McGregor is at 64 and I’ve got several alts that are calling my name to have fun with them. Life, life couldn’t be better.

The guild will flourish again, it's all about the fun guys, it's all about the fun.

Thank you for reading, the Enhancement spec articles will continue shortly.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Building a better Shaman: Enhancement Spec (1 of ?)

Each class has a particular build that they feel is better suited for leveling up. A build that they think is better suited for the grind of getting from 10 to 70. For most players that play a Shaman, Enhancement is that spec. It has been for as long as I’ve been playing WoW and it doesn’t seem to want to change anytime soon.

One of the main reasons that players choose Enhancement for so long is because if a player wanted to use a two handed mace or axe, pre 2.3, they had to put points into that tree until they reached that talent, then they had to train up that skill to the point where it was viable for the player to use in combat. Not the most fun thing in the world but since we know that a two handed weapon can deal out more damage than a one hand and a shield, well then that works.

Right before the release of the Burning Crusade, Blizzard tossed Shamans another bone. They allowed us the ability to dual weld. This, of course, was a great idea but you couldn’t learn that ability until level 40, no matter how you placed your points on your talent tree. The dual weld aspect of this tree is still there but the two hand specialization is no longer a problem. Since 2.3 we Shaman have had the ability to train in two handed weapons at a weapons trainer (Yay!).

What I’m going to do is talk about where those points that you’re dying to spend would be best suited to help you gain the levels that you desire and also make you more of a melee machine than you already are or are trying to be. (My thought process with the help of a couple of other Shaman. This in no way means that the way I’m showing is the ONLY way or the BEST way out there, just the way that I feel is best for me.)

The first choice is always the hardest and let me say that I’ve put points in both in the past. The choices that you get are Ancestral Knowledge and Shield Specialization. If you think about it both of these choices are very good.

Shield Specialization is great for a low level that’s going to rely on that extra armor on them because it boosts the blocks that you’re going to have with your shield. So, yes it will draw out the fight but honestly, in the long run it’ll save your hide more than you know.

Ancestral Knowledge, for when you’re higher level and are relying more on your long range spells is awesome. It boosts you overall mana. By the time you’re done putting five points in, you’ve increased your mana pool by five percent. I know it sounds like small potatoes but trust, that five percent goes a long way.

At the moment I’m down for five with Ancestral Knowledge.

The second set of choices is a little trickier. It’s almost as if they built trees to be redone after hitting level forty.

Guardian Totems is good for a low level. It gives you the added buffer against attacks coming to you. It gives you a ten percent reduction of damage. Put that with Shield Specialization and you’ll be taking on same and higher level mobs with more ease than some other classes at your same level. Add to that the fact that it also decreased the time you have to wait to use grounding and it’s a joy because it helps with running mobs. So it’s giving you two advantages.

Thundering Strikes is good for those who like to melee up close and personal, like me. Each point that you put into this talent gives you another percent at a critical strike. I know that sounds like no big whoop but trust me; it’s a nice boost to a stat that you don’t really get to work on until later on in the game plus it’ll help with one of the talents that you can pick up further down the tree.

Improved Ghost Wolf, I consider this a MUST for any low level Shaman players. Why? Simple, unlike Druids who have some limitations on when they can use travel form, Ghost Wolf does not. You get into a pinch that you don’t think you can survive? Use Ghost Wolf and RUN. Of course you don’t get that until level 20 but still, IGH brings down the cast time pretty good and allows for you to have a little more health when running away. I don’t have it now, epic mount and all, but I used this up until level fifty or so, I thought it was THAT vital.

Improved Lightning Shield. I’m using this at the moment. You put three points in and you get an additional fifteen percent damage done to a mob. For, what is basically, a defensive ability, this is HUGE! Think about it. Lightning Shield and you’ve got Windfury prots on your weapon. Suddenly that full health mob is down to half, with just one swing. It’s truly an amazing thing to see and it’s a lot of fun to see that happen. Trust me, you’ll love this at a higher level.

It occurs to me as I write this, I’m begin REALLY retentive on how I do this so this is going to be a multi part series. This concludes the first part of the tree for now. Tomorrow I’ll try to finish out the rest if I can.


Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Building a Better Shaman: Corrections

I want to thank the people that have stopped by and made a couple of comments.

Urthona of Cenarion Circle was nice enough to point out that there is indeed a Shaman trainer in Ironforge. Seems that the trainer is on the opposite side of the gryphons inside a house. So you actually have to look for him, just go in and out of the houses until you find him.

Girl meets WoW stopped by for a second, even in her sick condition (thank you!) and reminded me that the totems go up to level thirty. So for you that are reading this, here is a list of the totems you’re going to receive and the level in which you get them:
Earth Totem – Level 4
Fire Totem – Level 10
Water Totem – Level 20
Air Totem – Level 30

The last two totems are very good for when you’re grouping, the first two are INCREDIBLE for when you’re mostly working solo up until 20. Sorry for the gaffs. But I like to correct my mistakes. Hopefully my next entry will be up to par. Thanks again!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Building a Better Shaman: Low level Crap

Last time we talked about survival; more importantly the way to survive the first levels of a new Shaman without the benefit of a large mana pool. When you start hitting the mid teen levels you should have enough money to start spending on some upgrades or you should start getting some green drops.

Let me make it clear that when you’re a low level, don’t be picky. If a cloth or leather green drop, use it. If it’s got better stats than the whites that you are wearing you shouldn’t pass it up. When I say stats I’m not talking overall armor. At a low level it’s impossible to get high armor anyway, you should be looking at the plus stats that it gives you that will hold you over until you’re able to properly set yourself up.

Ashenvale has plenty of green drops in both ruins areas and the quest givers also give some nice green rewards for a shaman. However, since this is the only race that will have Shaman your best bet really is to stay on the isles until you complete all the quests. No, you’re not grounded, the rewards given out for the quests on those two isles are built specifically to fit into the classes that the race has. So you’re not going to find yourself completing a nice quest and finding out that you can’t use ANY of the greens offered to you. The other thing is that the isles are pretty deserted at this point since the new has worn off, so you won’t find yourself having competition with other people to find the mobs to complete a particular quest.

Still, let’s say that you’re strong headed and don’t want to level in the isles or have friends that rolled a human, dwarf or gnome (Why?) and you want to level with them doing the same quests. That’s fine. You should STILL wait until at least level 10 to run out of your starting zone and switching to the various other leveling areas.

If Elf country isn’t for you that means you’re headed to the human starting zone. Let me be the first to say, good luck to you. The biggest obstacle that you’re going to face, beside people looking at you funny and high levels wanting to duel you, is the Wetlands itself. Built for early level 20 players, you have to brave that run yourself at a mere level 10. Let me give you this piece of advice, when you get agro (Because you will) and you die, take the resurrection at the graveyard. Reason being is two fold. Firstly, you will probably be further into the Wetlands that you were when you died and secondly, it’s not really going to cost you anything. At level ten resurrection sickness is just a joke. Take the minimal damage that comes with it and trudge on. You’re going to run into huge spiders, angry orcs and the occasional dwarf as you run from the Wetlands to the homelands of the dwarfs.

When you see snow, you’re safe. At least for the time being. The other thing that I want to remind you of is this, get the flight points. It takes two extra seconds to veer off course and get the flight paths. You should get three heading from the Wetlands to Ironforge

Outside of the Exodar there is only one place that has a Shaman trainer and that’s Stormwind. He seems like a bit of an unwanted guest as he sits underneath the trees that sit below the bridge leading to the main gates. Kinda sad but then I think that perhaps as a Shaman he just doesn’t want to deal with the crap that the human world brings him. In either case that’s the gent you need to go to in order to train up. Sad thing is, if you’ve decided to leave the isles to level up, you still have to go back in order to get all your totems. (See, I told you to STAY in the isles!)

You should have all of your totems at level 20. You may not have all the spells that they can do but your four best friends for the rest of your time playing a shaman will be with you.

You should not really have to go out and buy stuff from the AH, unless it’s DIRTY cheap, nothing over 50s is worth it honestly and even then it’s pushing it.

Lowbie crap over. Next time we talk specs.


Ratings by outbrain