Moar Achievements: Noblegarden 2012

Welcome to Noblegarden.  This is one of the easier achievements and you can farm the lot in a morning.  Well you could if the Springstrider didn’t need 500!!! chocolates.  Farming that many in one go will drive you mad.  Make sure you have some chocolate handy while doing this as the constant references to chocolate will make you crave chocolate.  Just sayin’.

To get the Noble Gardener achievement you need to get the following:

  • I Found One! – Find a Brightly Coloured Egg
  • Desert Rose – Use Spring Robes to plant a flower in the listed places
  • Hard Boiled – Lay an egg in Un’Goro Crater’s Golakka Hot Springs
  • Noble Garden – Hide a Noblegarden Egg in Stormwind/Silvermoon
  • Chocoholic – Eat 100 Noblegarden Chocolates
  • Blushing Bride – Kiss someone wearing an Elegant Dress while wearing a White Tuxedo Shirt and Black Tuxedo Pants
  • Spring Fling – Matchmake your Spring Rabbit in the four starter towns
  • Shake Your Bunny Maker – Put rabbit ears on female toons of each race.

There are a few bonus achievements and items:

  • Chocolate Lover – Eat 25 Chocolates
  • Sunday’s Finest – Discover the White Tuxedo Shirt and Black Tuxedo Pants by opening Brighly Coloured Eggs.
  • Dressed for the Occasion –  Discover the Elegant Dress by opening Brighly Coloured Eggs.
  • Spring Rabbit – this drops from eggs or costs 100 chocolates and is needed for the meta
  • Springstrider – this costs 500 chocolates and is Bind on Pickup (and so not for farming and selling as per recent holidays)

How you do it

  1. Head off to the faction specific starter town of your choice and start the grand egg hunt.  On Alliance I always go to Azure Watch and on Horde I prefer Falconwing Square.  I know where the eggs are in these towns.  But any of these towns will do.  Start collecting eggs.  Lots and lots of eggs.  You need at least 115 and up to 915 chocolates to complete these achievements and get the mount.  You should get I Found One! at the first egg.  You should complete the quest to get the Noblegarden Basket (10 chocolates).  Equip this so you can collect eggs faster as it will give you a movement speed boost. [Cost so far: 10 chocolates]
  2. Keep collecting eggs until you have 100 chocolates.   Now eat them. Mmmm tasty.  You should get Chocolate Lover and Chocoholic.  [Cost so far: 110 chocolates)]
  3. You will need some items for some of the above achievements.  Below is a list of the items and how much they cost.  Most, if not all of these items also have a chance of dropping randomly from an egg.  This is why you do Chocoholic first.  Keep collecting eggs until you can afford all of the items.  If you get any drops, collect less chocolates.
    1. Spring Robes (50 chocolates)
    2. Spring Rabbit (100 chocolates)
    3. White Tuxedo Shirt (25 chocolates – you need these to drop to get Sunday’s Finest, they are NOT soulbound)
    4. Black Tuxedo Pants (25 chocolates – you need these to drop to get Sunday’s Finest , they are NOT soulbound)
    5. Spring Flowers (50 chocolates)
    6. Elegant Dress (50 chocolates – optional as you don’t need it yourself and you need this to drop for Dressed for the Occasion) [Cost so far: 110 chocolates + up to 250 for required drops + 50 for an optional drop = 110-410]
  4. You will need to buy a Noblegarden Egg and place it in Stormwind/Silvermoon for 5 chocolates to get Noble Garden as this item does not drop. [Cost so far 115-415 chocolates]
  5. Remember I mentioned you don’t need the Elegant Dress yourself? You need to find someone else who has it.  If you have one and you are going AFK its a nice thing to put this on.  For your own achievement you need to wear the White Tuxedo Shirt and the Black Tuxedo Pants and /kiss someone wearing an Elegant Dress to get Blushing Bride.
  6. You now need to do some travelling.  Hit all the places listed in Desert Rose and use your robes.  Also visit the remaining faction specific starter towns to matchmake your Spring Rabbit for Spring Fling.  This second part does need other people to be around which is fairly easy early in the festival.  Later on you may need to find a friend to help you with this.
  7. There are two ways of doing Hard Boiled.  The easiest is to travel to Golakka Hot Springs in Un’Goro with a friend and turn each other into rabbits once you get there.  You can get the Blossoming Branch item for this from the daily quest available in the egg collecting towns and it only uses broken shells so no extra chocolates.  The achievement can take a while to activate sometimes, I seem to recall.  The solo version takes some planning:
    1. Put your hearthstone in Silithus (you can stone and keep the costume – you cannot fly, mount or use a portal)
    2. Make your way to an egg collection location and keep collecting eggs until you get randomly turned into a rabbit.
    3. Stone to Silithus.
    4. Run to Golakka Hot Springs in Un’goro without fighting anything.
  8. Spring Flowers puts bunny ears on another character for Shake Your Bunny Maker.  Finding a female of each race isn’t too hard, though there are inevitably a couple of challenges in the other faction.  Unlike other achievements in this vein, you can’t get a friend to make a level 1 toon.  A few tips for this one are:
    1. Visit Cataclysm base areas via the portals.  The Temple of Earth and the entry point to Mount Hyjal are good as you can take a portal back.
    2. There are still people in Dalaran.  So a trip there is worth it.
    3. PvP.  Tol Barad and Battlegrounds might have what you need.
    4. Sit outside Orgrimmar/Stormwind and watch for the PvPers.
    5. Roll one of those free accounts and create an opposite faction toon.  Type /who RACE and see who is around and where they are.  Stalk them.
  9. Finally, you can farm the chocolates for the Swift Springstrider – all 500 of them! [Cost so far: 115-915 chocolates]

Moar Achievements: Mountain O’ Mounts Action Plan 58-100 (the harder part)

So now you’re sitting on 57 mounts and maybe a few more. Heres where it starts to get a little tricker. I’m going to suggest some further mounts, and then a pool of mounts from which you can draw your final selection.

Things to know about Mountain O’ Mounts

  • Class mounts don’t count
  • Profession mounts do count
  • You don’t need to be Exalted with your own faction
  • This is an Alliance list – but all mounts have a Horde equivalent

What you are going to need

  • Cash! At least 16829 gold according to the list I chose, though you could replace some of these mounts with cheaper options if you were willing to farm for longer/can do more achievements/have rare mounts. This assumes no discounts so you will spend less with faction discounts and the guild saving.
  • Time – you will need to farm reputations at some point, and there are quite a few mounts to be had from dailies too. You also can’t do all the dailies every day.
  • A level 85 toon (I include Tol Barad mounts here, hence the requirement – you could do this achievement at a lower level, but you would need more of the alternative mounts).
  • 2175 Justice Points
  • 14000 Honor Points
  • At least Artisan Riding. You can gain Master Riding by doing the holiday meta if you wish. None of these mounts require Master Riding to use.

The mounts

The following mount groupings aren’t an order in which to do them – you will want to run several of these in parallel.

58. Silver Riding Talbuk – 70 gold + Exalted with the Kurenai
59. Cobalt Riding Talbuk – 70 gold + Exalted with the Kurenai
60. Tan Riding Talbuk – 70 gold + Exalted with the Kurenai
61. White Riding Talbuk – 70 gold + Exalted with the Kurenai
62. Silver War Talbuk – 100 gold + Exalted with the Kurenai
63. Cobalt War Talbuk – 100 gold + Exalted with the Kurenai
64. Tan War Talbuk – 100 gold + Exalted with the Kurenai
65. White War Talbuk – 100 gold + Exalted with the Kurenai

The gold cost here is relatively small, but farming Kurenai rep will take a while. The best way to do this is to complete all the quests in Nagrand and then kill ogres/cultists in Nagrand. Lots of them. Keep killing them until you hit Exalted. You can hand in the warbeads that drop from ogres for Kurenai rep too, or you can keep them for Consortium rep if you are achievement hunting in general.
Cost so far: 1609 gold + 2175 Justice Points + 12000 Honor Points

66. Azure Netherwing Drake – 200 gold + Exalted with the Netherwing
67. Cobalt Netherwing Drake – 200 gold + Exalted with the Netherwing
68. Onyx Netherwing Drake – 200 gold + Exalted with the Netherwing
69. Purple Netherwing Drake – 200 gold + Exalted with the Netherwing
70. Veridian Netherwing Drake – 200 gold + Exalted with the Netherwing
71. Violet Netherwing Drake – 200 gold + Exalted with the Netherwing

Netherwing rep is somewhat time consuming to get. First you need to complete all the quests in Shadowmoon Valley that relate to the Netherwing. Then there are dailies. The number of dailies you can do increases as your reputation increases. Finally, you can farm the rare spawn eggs and hand in as many of these as you can find a day. They are located all over the Netherwing daily area and in the fortress to the north. Once you are Exalted you will be given a quest to go to Shattrath where you can select one of the drakes. You then go back to Shadowmoon Valley where you can buy the rest.
Cost so far: 2809 gold + 2175 Justice Points + 12000 Honor Points

72. Blue Riding Nether Ray – 200 gold + Exalted with the Sha’tari Skyguard
73. Green Riding Nether Ray – 200 gold + Exalted with the Sha’tari Skyguard
74. Purple Riding Nether Ray – 200 gold + Exalted with the Sha’tari Skyguard
75. Red Riding Nether Ray – 200 gold + Exalted with the Sha’tari Skyguard
76. Silver Riding Nether Ray – 200 gold + Exalted with the Sha’tari Skyguard

Skyguard rep comes from dailies and other actions in the Skettis area, plus a daily in the Ogri’la area. You can also kill Skettis Arakkoa. I’d recommend just focusing on the Skettis area in Terokkar Forest. Do the dailies there and collect Shadow Dust, which you can hand in to get an Elixir of Shadows. This allows you to see undead arakkoa too. Kill these and get 10 scrolls of ressurection, which you can use to summon named arakkoa. Four of these drop unique items which you can hand in to get an item to summon Terokk, who you kill. Each of these gives reputation and it gives a little structure to what is basically kill all the things rep grind.
Cost so far: 3609 gold + 2175 Justice Points + 12000 Honor Points

77. Winterspring Frostsaber – complete 20 dailies

Visit Frostsaber Rock in Winterspring to start these quests. You will get a baby frostsaber to care for and have to feed and play with him via 20 daily quests. When you have 20 whiskers, hand them in and he’ll be all grown up.
Cost so far: 3609 gold + 2175 Justice Points + 12000 Honor Points

Choices, or the REALLY HARD part
Now we start to get into optional mounts. You need to pick 23 mounts from those below. It comes down to cash versus time spent and your own preference about which to go with.

Swift Grey Steed – 500 gold + 5 Champion’s Seals
Swift Moonsaber – 500 gold + 5 Champion’s Seals
Swift Violet Ram – 500 gold + 5 Champion’s Seals
Turbostrider – 500 gold + 5 Champion’s Seals
Great Read Elekk – 500 gold + 5 Champion’s Seals
Argent Warhorse – 100 Champion’s Seals
Darnassian Nightsaber – 100 Champion’s Seals
Exodar Elekk – 100 Champion’s Seals
Gnomeregon Mechanostrider – 100 Champion’s Seals
Ironforge Ram – 100 Champion’s Seals
Quel’dorai Steed – 100 Champion’s Seals
Stormwind Steed – 100 Champion’s Seals
Silver Covenant Hippogryph – 150 Champion’s Seals
Argent Hippogryph – 150 Champion’s Seals

These come from the Argent Tournament dailies area. It will take a while to get to the point where you can collect and purchase these, but you will get a lot of achievements along the way and you can also access more mounts and some pets. If you are starting from scratch there are also a lot of achievements to be had by doing these dailies. These are a classic example of time versus cash. It will only take a couple of days to farm the seals for those needing only 5 and some cash, or you can save money by farming a lot more. I intend to use these to fill out the last mounts I need.

Drake of the West Wind – 200 Tol Barad Commendations
Spectral Steed – 165 Tol Barad Commendations

You get these by doing Tol Barad dailies. You need to be Exalted with Baradin’s Wardens too, but by the time you have that many commendations you will be close if not already there. You can do the base camp dailies once a day, plus the dailies in Tol Barad itself while your faction holds it. You also get three for the weekly Tol Barad win quest. There are three sets of rotating dailies which will be different every time you win Tol Barad so in theory you can do all three sets in a day. You also get commendations for the weekly win Tol Barad quest. I intend to farm one of these.

Darkmoon Dancing Bear – 180 Darkmoon Tokens
Swift Forest Strider – 180 Darkmoon Tokens

Collect tokens by doing the quests at the Darkmoon Faire. You can get up to 145 tokens per Darkmoon Faire so you could do it in three Faire’s but most likely it will take 4. I intend to farm one of these.

Cenarion War Hippogryph – 2000 gold + Exalted with Cenarion Expedition

CE rep isn’t too bad to get. Complete quests in Zangamarsh and Borean Tundra, and run lots of Steamvaults. You can get Coilfang Armament drops to speed it up.

Flameward Hippogryph – The Molton Front Offensive completed

This will take doing dailies for a few weeks, but you will make quite a bit of cash doing these as they are current and the mount is particularly nice looking. You can also get access to some pets and lots of achievements.

Stormpike Battle Charger – 2000 Honor Points + Exalted with Stormpike

Best option for your Honor mounts is to wait for Alterac Valley weekend and farm the lot. You get far more HP for AV than any other weekend. Also do the quests from the AV entrance area to get further Stormpike reputation. Its not too bad and you can farm gear and mounts while you do it. I might skip this. I depends if an AV weekend comes up before I get 100 mounts and what else I am doing that weekend.

Ice Mammoth – 1000 gold + Exalted with Sons of Hodir

Sons of Hodir rep comes from quests and dailies in Storm Peaks. You can also hand in Relics of Ulduar from killing mobs in the Storm Peaks. Finally, and best of all, you can get Sons of Hodir Commendations which give 500 rep for just 16 Justice Points! There are two mounts, but the other one costs 10000 gold! You get an achievement for each mount.

Armored Brown Bear – 750 gold
Golden King – 1500 gold + Guild level 25
Armored Snowy Gryphon – 2000 gold
Red Drake – 2000 gold

These are splash the cash mounts. You could replace these with other mounts and save some gold. There are other more expensive mounts available if you have LOTS of cash. I have the bear and will likely buy the guild mount at least.

Fossilized Raptor – Archaology
Ultramarine Qiraji Battle Tank – Archaeology

The Raptor isn’t that rare. The Battle Tank is very rare. It all depends on how much Archaeology you are willing to do!

Tyrael’s Charger – Annual Pass
Celestial Steed – Blizzard Store
Winged Guardian – Blizzard Store

If you want to part with some cash, these mounts can be yours. The Annual Pass mount actually won’t cost you any extra if you intend to play for the next year anyway.

Swift Lovebird – Love is in the Air (holiday tokens)
Swift Springstrider – Noblegarden (holiday tokens)
Big Love Rocket – Love is in the Air (drop – very rare)
Swift Brewfest Ram – Brewfest (drop – rare)
Great Brewfest Kodo – Brewfest (drop – rare)
Headless Horseman’s Mount – Hallow’s End (drop – very rare)
Violet Proto-Drake – What a Long Strange Trip its Been

These can be used to supplement other mounts if the holiday itself is on. The token based mounts are not hard to get and are very efficient forms of mount collection. The Violet Proto-Drake takes a whole year, but does give you Master riding for free. And a LOT of achievement points.

Red Proto Drake – Glory of the Hero
Ironbound Proto-Drake – Glory of the Ulduar Hero 10
Bloodbathed Frostbrood Vanquisher – Glory of the ICC Hero 10
Icebound Frostbrood Vanquisher – Glory of the ICC Hero 25
Rusted Proto-Drake – Glory of the Uldaur Hero 25
Amani Battle Bear – ZA Timed Run
Black War Bear – For the Alliance!
Corrupted Firehawk – Glory of the Firelands Raider
Drake of the East Wind – Glory of the Cataclysm Raider
Twilight Harbinger – Glory of the Dragon Soul Raider
Volcanic Stone Drake – Glory of the Cataclysm Hero
Dark Phoenix – 3000 gold + Guild Glory of the Cataclysm Raider
Vicious War Steed – Veteran of the Alliance

These mounts come from achievements. Its possible you may have some of these already.

I’m not going to list them all, but there are also the rare mounts. I don’t believe any of these are worth actively farming. With one exception. If you are exalted with The Oracles you may as well farm the Green Proto-Drake which comes from the egg. I say this because even if you never get it, you should get the pets and you can sell duplicate pets to pay for other mounts. Its never going to be a waste of time.

From this list I intend to use:

78. Red Proto-Drake
79. Ironbound Proto-Drake
80. Bloodbathed Frostbrood Vanquisher
81. Green Proto-Drake
82. Violet Proto-Drake
83. Swift Lovebird
84. Swift Springstrider (I will farm this next week)
85. Tyrael’s Charger (I was going to play WoW for a year and pay for D3 so this is a bonus)
86. Fossilised Raptor
87. Armored Brown Bear
88. Flameward Hippogryph
89. Cenarion War Hippogryph
90. Swift Violet Ram
91. Ironforge Ram
92. Darkmoon Dancing Bear
93. Ice Mammoth
94. Drake of the West Wind
95. Swift Moonsaber
96. Swift Grey Steed
97. Turbostrider
98. Great Red Elekk
99. Golden King
100. ???

I haven’t decided what the last mount will be. It depends on how long other things take and what opportunities are available. I might treat myself to a Mekgineer’s Chopper …

Moar Achievements: Mountain O’ Mounts Action Plan 1-57 (the easy part)

The good news is that there are a lot of mounts in game now that you can use to get the Mountain O’ Mounts achievement (100 mounts).  The bad news is that mount collecting is expensive!  This is my Mountain O’ Mounts action plan, plus some optional extra mounts you could use towards your collection.

Things to know about Mountain O’ Mounts

  • Class mounts don’t count
  • Profession mounts do count
  • You don’t need to be Exalted with your own faction
  • This is an Alliance list – but all mounts have a Horde equivalent

 What you are going to need

  • Cash!  At least 16829 gold according to my action plan, though you could replace some of these mounts with cheaper options if you were willing to farm for longer/can do more achievements/have rare mounts. This assumes no discounts so you will spend lest with faction discounts and the guild saving.
  • Time – you will need to farm reputations at some point, and there are quite a few mounts to be had from dailies too.  You also can’t do all the dailies every day.
  • A level 85 toon (I include Tol Barad mounts here, hence the requirement – you could do this achievement at a lower level, but you would need more of the alternative mounts).
  • 2175 Justice Points
  • 14000 Honor points
  • At least Artisan Riding.  You can gain Master Riding by doing the holiday meta if you wish.  None of these mounts require Master Riding to use.

The mounts

1. Abyssal Seahorse – Vashj’ir quest

Just go to Vashj’ir and follow the quest line and you will get this mount for free and quite quickly.

2. Black Stallion – 1 gold + Exalted with Stormwind
3. Brown Horse –  1 gold + Exalted with Stormwind
4. Chestnut Mare –  1 gold + Exalted with Stormwind
5. Pinto –  1 gold + Exalted with Stormwind
6. Swift Brown Steed –  10 gold + Exalted with Stormwind
7. Swift Palamino –  10 gold + Exalted with Stormwind
8. Swift White Steed –  10 gold + Exalted with Stormwind

You can become Exalted with Stormwind by buying a Stormwind Tabard and wearing it while in any instance, including low level ones. You will get reputation for every mob killed. The mounts are all available from the stables within Stormwind.
Cost so far: 34 gold

9. Blue Mechanostrider –  1 gold + Exalted with Gnomeregan
10. Green Mechanostrider –  1 gold + Exalted with Gnomeregan
11. Red Mechanostrider –  1 gold + Exalted with Gnomeregan
12. Unpainted Mechanostrider –  1 gold + Exalted with Gnomeregan
13. Swift Green Mechanostrider –  10 gold + Exalted with Gnomeregan
14. Swift White Mechanostrider –  10 gold + Exalted with Gnomeregan
15. Swift Yellow Mechanostrider –  10 gold + Exalted with Gnomeregan

You can become Exalted with Gnomeregan by buying a Gnomeregan Tabard and wearing it while in any instance, including low level ones. You will get reputation for every mob killed. The mounts are all available just outside Kharanos.
Cost so far: 68 gold

16. Brown Elekk –  1 gold + Exalted with Exodar
17. Grey Elekk –  1 gold + Exalted with Exodar
18. Purple Elekk –  1 gold + Exalted with Exodar
19. Great Blue Elekk –  10 gold + Exalted with Exodar
20. Great Green Elekk –  10 gold + Exalted with Exodar
21. Great Purple Elekk –  10 gold + Exalted with Exodar

You can become Exalted with Exodar by buying an Exodar Tabard and wearing it while in any instance, including low level ones. You will get reputation for every mob killed. The mounts are all available just outside the Exodar.
Cost so far: 101 gold

22. Brown Ram –  1 gold + Exalted with Ironforge
23. Grey Ram –  1 gold + Exalted with Ironforge
24. White Ram –  1 gold + Exalted with Ironforge
25. Swift Brown Ram –  10 gold + Exalted with Ironforge
26. Swift Grey Ram –  10 gold + Exalted with Ironforge
27. Swift White Ram –  10 gold + Exalted with Ironforge

You can become Exalted with Ironforge by buying an Ironforge Tabard and wearing it while in any instance, including low level ones. You will get reputation for every mob killed. The mounts are all available from the Amberstill Ranch in Dun Morogh.
Cost so far: 134 gold

28. Spotted Frostsaber – 1 gold + Exalted with Darnassus
29. Striped Dawnsaber – 1 gold + Exalted with Darnassus
30. Striped Frostsaber – 1 gold + Exalted with Darnassus
31. Striped Nightsaber – 1 gold + Exalted with Darnassus
32. Swift Frostsaber – 10 gold + Exalted with Darnassus
33. Swift Mistsaber – 10 gold + Exalted with Darnassus
34. Swift Stormsaber – 10 gold + Exalted with Darnassus

You can become Exalted with Darnassus by buying a Darnassus Tabard and wearing it while in any instance, including low level ones. You will get reputation for every mob killed. The mounts are all available from Darnassus.
Cost so far: 168 gold

35. Mountain Horse – 1 gold + Exalted with Gilneas
36. Swift Mountain Horse – 10 gold + Exalted with Gilneas

You can become Exalted with Gilneas by buying a Gilneas Tabard and wearing it while in any instance, including low level ones. You will get reputation for every mob killed. The mounts are all available from Darnassus (from the Gilnean area).
Cost so far: 179 gold

37. Ebon Gryphon – 50 gold
38. Golden Gryphon – 50 gold
39. Snowy Gryphon – 50 gold
40. Swift Blue Gryphon – 100 gold
41. Swift Green Gryphon – 100 gold
42. Swift Purple Gryphon – 100 gold
43. Swift Red Gryphon – 100 gold

All of these mounts can be brought in Stormwind from the vendor near the flight master.
Cost so far: 729 gold

44. Brown Riding Camel – 100 gold + Exalted with Ramkahen
45. Tan Riding Camel – 100 gold + Exalted with Ramkahen

You can become Exalted with Ramkahen through quests in Uldum.  You can also buy a Ramkahen Tabard from the Quartermaster in Uldum and wear it in at least Cataclysm level instances.  You will get reputation for every mob killed.  The mounts can be brought from the same Quartermaster.
Cost so far: 929 gold

46. Wooly Mammoth – 2175 Justice Points
Cost so far: 929 gold + 2175 Justice Points

47. Black War Elekk – 2000 Honor Points
48. Black War Mammoth – 2000 Honor Points
49. Black War Ram – 2000 Honor Points
50. Black War Tiger – 2000 Honor Points
52.  Black Battlestrider – 2000 Honor Points
53. Black War Steed – 2000 Honor Points

Yes I know mount number 51 is missing.
Cost so far: 929 gold + 2175 Justice Points + 12000 Honor Points

51. Albino Drake – you get this for having 50 mounts! Congratulations.

Cost so far: 929 gold + 2175 Justice Points + 12000 Honor Points

54. Bronze Drake – Heroic Culling of Stratholme

The Bronze Drake is a guarenteed drop as long as you get to the boss in time.  You just have to win the roll.  If you take a buddy or two with you it should be easy to get it.
Cost so far: 929 gold + 2175 Justice Points + 12000 Honor Points

55. Blue Qiraji Battle Tank
56. Green Qiraji Battle Tank
57. Yellow Qiraji Battle Tank

These all drop from AQ40.  If you get a couple of people and run through this, you will get drops.  In fact, if you PuG this you will still likely get them as the drop like candy for the most part.  You can only use them in Ahn’Qiraj but they still count towards your meta.
Cost so far: 929 gold + 2175 Justice Points + 12000 Honor Points

Ulduar: Fiero with friends

Theres been some talk recently about Ulduar and the nostalgia people feel for Ulduar.  I wanted to delve into that a bit.

My Ulduar experience
During Ulduar I was in a guild called Forgotten Heroes that raided 25 mans.  In the first tier we had cleared 3 drakes while the content was relevant.  It took a long time, but since Naxxramas was so easy, we had a lot of time.

Ulduar was definitely harder.  We cleared Ulduar while the content was relevant and did at least one hard mode (XT).  We worked on others and got a couple in 10 man I think.  We may have done slightly better in 25 man – I can’t recall.

The drakes weren’t removed from Ulduar, so when Trial of the Crusader came and died we started going back to Ulduar on 10 man to work on the Hard Modes.  In those Hard Mode runs were the foundations of my current guild, Dreamstate.  We had way more fun doing that than we did raiding 25 man Trial of the Crusader.  Once we started Dreamstate at the beginning of Icecrown Citadel we made a point of going back and finishing off Ulduar.

Why Ulduar was good
Ulduar was the last raid of the old regime.  It was good because people it allowed people the challenge of Hard Modes, with the satisfaction of a Normal Mode clear.  Let me explain.

One of the reasons we raid is for that moment of victory.  The psychologists call this moment fiero – the cheer when you down a new boss.  It makes us feel good.  In Ulduar, you could ‘complete’ the instance by killing Yogg-Saron.  You could then do some Hard Modes.  On the surface that doesn’t sound so different to today.  However, the Hard Modes of Ulduar were very much ‘optional extras’.  They didn’t exist on every boss, they were gradated so you could come at them gradually, and in some cases they were insanely hard so that the expectation of completion just wasn’t there.  The fiero moment given by downing Yogg-Saron was therefore more significant than downing a final boss on normal these days.  When you downed Yogg-Saron you had ‘completed’ the instance (Algalon never counted).  Now, when you downed Ragnaros you face the option of starting all over again.

That wasn’t the only thing.  Ulduar had a good difficulty curve with progression through being smooth.  That contrasts to Firelands, for example, where the step up to Ragnaros was too steep, especially on heroic.  The fact that Algalon was insanely hard didn’t matter as most people didn’t count him.  Thats the same model that worked so well with Sinestra in Bastion of Twilight.

What the numbers say … and what they don’t
Theres likely a part of the nostalgia for Ulduar that is just ‘rose tinted glasses syndrome’.  As I said, it was the last raid of its kind, before the Heroic Mode raiding we see today came in.  But I suspect that a lot of the love for Ulduar comes from people who aren’t on the chart published by MMO Champion.  I suspect that a lot of the love for Ulduar comes from people like me who went back later.  Especially while Trial of the Crusader was out.

Trial of the Crusader was an odd raid.  But I would suspect that Blizzard knew what it was doing more than we might think.  Trial of the Crusader was essentially the equivalent of an Ulduar nerf.  By giving us a little tier, we could gear up and go back to Ulduar!  That would explain a lot.

Ulduar’s success, in my mind, comes from its ability to transcend raid tiers.  Even two tiers later there was still motivation to go back.  That is not something Blizzard have managed to repeat in this expansion.  When players return to an older tier its often not through guild organised, formal raiding.  It was for the fun of trying to get the Hard Modes they never managed before.   By not nerfing tier 11 Heroic Modes, and by having Heroic Ragnaros be so very hard, players were less motivated to go back.  In Ulduar, the increased gear of the next tiers made the Hard Modes about as difficult as normal mode content.  So you could go and have fun in Ulduar with friends knowing the content would not be out of your reach.  And theres nothing more appealing in the game than fiero with friends!

So if Ulduar’s success is because of its social connections, and its easy access to fiero moments, then thats something Blizzard should look to achieve in all its raids.  Maybe then we’ll wax lyrically about up and coming raids too.

Moar Achievements: Love is in the Air 2012

Now for one of the trickier achievements. Love is in the Air brings as much frustration as it does love!

To get the Fool for Love achievement you need to get the following:

  • Charming – Create 12 Lovely Charm Bracelets
  • Shafted! – Shoot 10 players with a Silver Shafted Arrow
  • Flirt with Disaster – Get drunk, put on some perfume and throw some rose petals over the named person, then kiss them
  • Lonely? – Enjoy a Buttermilk Delight with someone at a Romantic Picnic in Dalaran
  • Dangerous Love – Complete the quest chain
  • The Rocket’s Pink Glare – Shoot off 10 Love Rockets in 20 seconds or less
  • Nation of Adoration – Complete the Lovely Charm Bracelet daily quest for each of your faction’s leaders
  • Fistful of Love – Shower the listed class-race combinations with a handful of petals
  • Sweet Tooth – East one of each of the listed chocolates
  • Be Mine! – Eat one of each of the listed candies
  • My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose – Get a Bouquet of Red or Ebon Roses
  • I Pitied The Fool – /pity the Love Fool in the listed locations

There are a few bonus achievements and items:

  • Lovely Luck is On Your Side – get a Lovely Black Dress from a Lovely Dress Box
  • Perma-Peddle – Obtain the Peddlefeet pet
  • Tough Love – kill the holiday bosses
  • Big Love Rocket (Feat of Strength) – Obtain the Big Love Rocket mount
  • There is also a new mount this year – the Swift Lovebird which costs 270 tokens.

How you do it
Lets start by talking about currencies.  Why?  Because there are far too many currency type items in this festival.  For doing quests you get Love Tokens.  Love Tokens are the main currency you buy things with.  You also need to collect Lovely Charms.  Every 10 Lovely Charms can be made into a Lovely Charm Bracelet.  The Bracelets are used for quests that reward Love Tokens, but can also be exchanged for one Love Token each.  What you really want to know, however, is how many of everything you need!

You can make between 35 and 40 Love Tokens a day from daily quests (i.e. not by exchanging bracelets).  If you wanted to do everything, this should leave you with the following approximate time frames:

  • 3 days for the Achievement (99+ Love Tokens required – you may need more for further Bags of Heart Shaped Candies at 2 Tokens a time)
  • 1 day for Peddlefoot (or 2 with a lot left over)
  • 7-8 days for the Swift Love Bird

That leaves you with only 2 days to spare if you want to do it all.  So Love is in the Air is quite tight.

To do all four dailies every day for 14 days you need 56 Lovely Charm Bracelets or 560 Lovely Charms.  You need at least 12 (120) for your Achievement so thats the minimum number you should farm (and about right if all you are doing is the Achievements to cover you for the three days).

And so to work!

  1. Do the one off quests to give you the Dangerous Love achievement
  2. Every day you should be doing the following:
      • The ‘samples’ daily quest (there are 3 of which 1 will be available)
      • The Crushing the Crown daily quest
      • 4 daily quests to give a Lovely Charm Bracelet to each faction leader (the quests are in the cities themselves – the Darnassus one is the only one not at a standard Holiday location and is on an island between the bank and the temple) which will give you the Nation of Adoration achievement.
      • The holiday boss via the LFD tool (you only get the box with the tokens in once) whic will give you the Tough Love bonus achievement.
  3. You also need to farm Lovely Charms.  You can do this however you want, but the quicker its done, the quicker its over with!  Farm at least 12o and make them into Bracelets to get Charming.  Good places to farm these are the Fleshwerks and the Slag mobs in Halls of Lightning.  The Bracelets can be traded between characters.
  4. As you have the available Tokens you can then start shopping.  You need the following:
    1. 3 Handfuls of Rose Petals (2 Love Tokens each) to throw on the class-race combinations listed for Fistful of Love.  In your own faction sit in Stormwind and do /who gnome warlock etc. – all were easily found.  I found the opposing faction outside of Orgrimmar, but since Dalaran is used here and common farming spots are in Icecrown its also good to look there.
    2. As many Bags of Heart Candies (2 Love Tokens) as you need.  However, before you buy en masse, remember you can trade these so swap them with your friends/alts to get the ones you need.  When you have eaten one of each of the listed candies you will get Be Mine!
    3. Buy some strong alcohol from an inn and go looking for Sraaz (Alliance – he walks around the Great Forge in Ironforge) or Jeramiah Payson (Horde – the Cockroach vendor in Undercity who sits under one of the ramps up to the bank).  You need to do this in order – a) get completely smashed (keep drinking alcohol until it says that, b) put on your perfume (1 Love Token) and c) Throw a Handful of Rose Petals on your target and /kiss your target to get Flirt with Disaster.
    4. Buy 10 Silver Shafted Arrows (5 Love Tokens for 5) and shoot 10 players with them.  This gives Shafted!
    5. Buy 10 Love Rockets (5 Love Tokens for 5) and use them in 20 seconds or less.  Go somewhere with low lag, put the Love Rockets on a hot key and spam away.  They use a targeting circle.  This gives The Rocket’s Pink Glare
    6. Buy as many Boxes of Chocolates (10 Love Tokens) as you need to get one of each of the listed chocolates.  Don’t eat the Buttermilk Delight. You will need this for the next step.  Do eat the others.  These can be traded.
    7. Buy a Romantic Picnic Basket (10 Love Tokens), or find a friend who already has one (you can also risk just hoping someone else will have one).  Go to Dalaran with your Buttermilk Delight from step 5.  When you and another person are sitting at a single Romantic Picnic you can then eat your Buttermilk Delight.  This should give you Sweet Tooth and Lonely?
    8. Buy 5 Love Fools and go to each of the locations listed.  Put down the Love Fool, target it and use /pity.  Anywhere in the listed locations will do.  For Arathi Basin please note it says the Blacksmith so you need to be there.  The Love Fool does not last for long, but it can be /pitied by multiple people so if you want to speed things up do this one with friends.  This will give I Pitied The Fool.
    9. Lastly, you need to get a Bouquet of Red or Ebon Roses from one of the selected dungeon bosses.  They drop from Drahga Shadowburner in Grim Batol, Corla, Herald of Twilight in Blackrock Caverns, High Priestess Azil in The Stonecore and Admiral Ripsnarl in The Deadmines.  You have to win the roll to get My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose so this could take a few attempts.  You could do a few random heroics first and hope you get these while you also collect VP (they will be popular as people will be queuing for them specifically).  If you can get a group of guildies to help that increases your chance of getting the drop.
  5. Now if you want to do the additional achievements, then you need to keep doing the dailies to buy the items you need – the Peddlefeet pet for Perma-Peddle, the Big Love Bird mount and Lovely Dress Boxes (20 Love Tokens) in the hope of getting a black dress (this is not an easy one).  You also need to keep killing the Holiday boss every day in the hope of getting a Big Love Rocket.


Fighting back against ‘rape’ comments

The Love is in the Air guide is coming I promise!

But now for something completely different.

Theres been a little Twitterstorm going on surrounding Mana Obscura‘s Gazimoff who, when watching videos from Machinima.com came across a video where one of the directors said that ‘women were built for rape’.  Thats an utterly distasteful comment.  Its not a joke – rape is never a joke because rape is a violent, nasty crime that has victims.  For those victims, male or female, it can never be a joke.  Its not ‘acceptable gaming terminology’ and its not funny.  If you think that it is please don’t comment here because all that means is you are an sexist scumbag with no sense of empathy and an ego the size of the moon.

Gazimoff has written to Machinima.com to complain.  You can see his letter via Google+.  I just wanted to raise awareness of what he is doing and applaud him.  I know he will get a lot of abuse for doing this (its a sad thing, but those who stand up against this kind of behaviour do get a lot of abuse from the kind of people I mentioned above who not only think its okay to use that language, but defend the right of people to do it because they think it makes them less of a scumbag if all the cool kids are scumbags too).  Hes already had some people complain on Twitter.

So this is the anti-abuse.  Its the cheering Gazimoff on post.  I often find the haters are more vocal than the support so I wanted to make a point of offering support.

 

Moar Achievements: Lunar Festival 2012

Apologies for the lateness – I’ve not been well!  It can all be done in one day anyway.

The Lunar Festival is, like Midsummer, easy and time consuming.  And from this year it has the same bonus feature (at least 500g made) AND a new pet!

To get To Honor One’s Elders achievement you need to get the following:

  • Elders of Eastern Kingdoms – Speak to all the listed Elders
  • Elders of Kalimdor – Speak to all the listed Elders
  • Elders of the Dungeons – Speak to all the listed Elders
  • Elders of the Horde – Speak to all the listed Elders
  • Elders of the Alliance – Speak to all the listed Elders
  • Elders of Northrend – Speak to all the listed Elders
  • Elders of Cataclysm – Speak to all the listed Elders
  • 50 Coins of Ancestry – These come from all those Elders you’ve been speaking to
  • Lunar Festival Finery – Buy a festive pant suit or festive dress with  Coins of Ancestry.
  • The Rocket’s Red Glare – Shoot off 10 Red Rocket Clusters in 25 seconds or less.
  • Frenzied Firecracker – Shoot of 10 Festival Firecrackers in 30 seconds or less.
  • Elune’s Blessing – Complete the quest to kill Omen.

There are a few bonus achievements and items:

  • A Coin of Ancestry/5 Coins of Ancestry/10  Coins of Ancestry/ 25  Coins of Ancestry are all parts of the 50  Coins of Ancestry achievement, making that one quite valuable (even more so since you get it by doing all the other achievements)
  • Lunar Lantern (Alliance) and Festival Lantern (Horde) are available for 50  Coins of Ancestry.  These are BoE.

How you do it

  1. Start off in Stormwind/Orgrimmar (or another original faction city).  Complete all the quests there and do TheRocket’s Red Glare and Frenzied Firecracker.  The idea is the same for both – buy the required items (for cash), put them on a hot key and spam them.  The fireworks needs to be done near the launcher.  The Firecrackers are best done in a quiet corner and require you to use a target circle.  If you are struggling reduce you graphics settings.
  2. Start visiting those Elders!  Its time consuming, but not difficult.  Although the achievement has no hard level requirement, you ultimately will struggle to visit the Elders of the opposite faction and to solo the dungeons unless you are 85 or close.  I worked my way around each continent, doing dungeons as I went (though leave Mauradon for last because you WILL want to stone out).  Remember to solo your Northrend dungeons on Normal rather than Heroic to speed things up.  Three continents will give you Elders of the Eastern KingdomsElders of KalimdorElders of NorthrendElders of CataclysmElders of the DungeonsElders of the Alliance and Elders of the Horde.  Thats most of your meta done.
  3. Finally go to Moonglade.  Here you can spend your coins to buy clothing for Lunar Festival Finery.  You also need to pick up the quest to kill Omen.  In order to complete this quest you need to stand next to Omen’s corpse after he dies and get the buff.  You don’t actually have to kill Omen yourself.  But if you do need to hes quite tough.  A tank is particularly useful here and a tank and any other player should be able to kill him in one go at 85.  If not, hes going to hit you hard so it might take a few attempts.  The good news is his health does not reset between tries.  So if you and your friend can get him down 20% before you die, then he will have 80% left when you start again.  10-20% is about right for two players.  He will reset if you kite him too far.  You can kill him on your own but it will take a lot of time.  You can do Omen before the Elders, but you still need to go to Moonglade later to go shopping.

Elders it might be hard to find
Most of the Elders are fairly easy to find.  The following are more complex either because the label isn’t specific or they aren’t where you would expect:

  1. Ironforge – in the Mystic Ward
  2. Darnassus – Cenarion Enclave
  3. Undercity – in the throne room in the ruins
  4. Orgrimmar – near the flight master and the zepplin towers
  5. Thunder Bluff – Elder Rise
  6. Blasted Lands – by the Dark Portal
  7. The Hinterlands – the Creeping Ruin (in the middle)
  8. Searing Gorge – Blackchar Cave (in the south-western corner)
  9. Western Plaguelends – the Weeping Cave (in the north-east)
  10. Burning Steppes – on Dreadmaul Rock
  11. Zul’Gurub – in Northern Stranglethorn near the entrance (i.e. not in the dungeon)
  12. Eastern Plaguelands – Crown Guard Tower
  13. Stratholme – north section of Festival Lane (go in, go through the right hand gate and follow the left wall)
  14. Blackrock Depths – Ring of Law (you can run in and out before the fight starts)
  15. Lower Blackrock Spire – near the first bridge (go in, go down and through the second door on  your right and follow the path)
  16. Twilight Highlands – The Dunwald Ruins and the Thundermar Ruins
  17. Deepholm – Stonehearth
  18. Vashj’ir – Biel’aran Ridge – the southern part of the Shimmering Expanse
  19. Winterspring – Lake Kel’Theril
  20. Feralas – Lariss Pavillion (just north of Camp Mojache)
  21. Tanaris – outside the Ruins of Uldum
  22. Azshara – the Ravencrest Monument (south-east)
  23. Thousand Needles – Freewind Post
  24. Un’Goro – Slithering Scar
  25. Mauradon – go through the central entrance to the second part of the instance and follow it down to the extreme south-east corner – I have linked the WoWhead info as its a long way to run if you get it wrong
  26. Zul’Farrak – up near Gahz’rilla
  27. Mount Hyjal – Sanctury of Malorne
  28. Uldum – Khartut’s Tomb and the Ruins of Ammon
  29. The Nexus – in Ormorok the Treeshaper’s room
  30. Rainspeaker Rapids – near Freya in the north-east
  31. Wintergrasp – in the fortress – you need to hold Wintergrasp to get this Elder
  32. Azjol-Nerub – by the pool when you drop down for the final boss
  33. Halls of Stone – on the way to Krystallus
  34. Drak’tharon Keep – King Dred’s den
  35. Gundrak – Behind the Drakkari Colossus
  36. Utgarde Pinnacle – Under the stairs after Skadi
  37. Utgarde Keep – After Prince Keleseth

Morrighan’s Siege of Wyrmrest Temple LFR Crib Sheet

Covering LFR difficulty only.  I will add links to MMO Champion’s boss pages (Learn to Raid vids, Encounter Journal entries and loot tables) as well as the well written tactics at Icy Veins for people doing normal/heroic raiding.

There are four bosses in the Siege of Wymrest Temple.

Morchock [MMO Champion | Icy Veins]

  • 2 tanks who should always be the closest to the boss to take the double Stomp damage.
  • The raid should stand behind the boss at maximum melee range to share Stomp damage.
  • 7 ranged/healers should move to each red crystal as it spawns and sit right on top of it until it explodes. Closer = less damage.  While this isn’t vital, if your health is low it might kill you.
  • Every so often he will pull you all towards him and cast The Earth Consumes you which spawns some spikes (don’t get hit as these spawn as they do damage).  Hide behind them.
  • Hide from the black blood in the safe spots behind the spikes.  Once the blood has spawned you can move to dps him if you have a safe spot available.  The blood will kill you even on LFR.
  • He enrages at 20%.

Warlord Zon’ozz [ MMO Champion | Icy Veins]

  • 1 tank should fact him away from the raid.
  • Melee should hug behind the boss.  Ranged should stand further back and behind him.
  • Dispel Disrupting Shadows immediately.
  • Every so often a void spawns.  It can be bounced between players, making it grow larger.  A small group, including a healer, should do this.  It can be safely ignored, but more bounces will speed up the fight by making the boss take more damage during the burn phase.
  • Once it hits the boss, hug.  He will do lots of AoE damage.  Pop cooldowns and burn.
  • Repeat until dead.

Yor’sahj the Unsleeping [MMO Champion | Icy Veins]

  • 1 tank.
  • Its all about the oozes here.  There are 6 possible different coloured oozes and he will spawn 3 every so often.  You can kill one of them.  The other 2 will merge with the boss and give him certain abilities.  Its all about the combinations.
  • The oozes do the following:
    • Purple means every 5 heals on a target cause the target to explode and take damage.  Use big heals and avoid AoE heals. Better just to kill it.
    • Green causes the raid to be digested and does minor damage.  There is no splash damage in LFR so hug.  This is almost harmless in LFR.
    • Yellow increases attack speed and adds an AoE component to Void Bolt.  Hug.
    • Black spawns add that cast spells on players.  Hug and AoE.
    • Red damages 3/8 people at random.  Hug.
    • Blue causes a mana void to appear and suck mana from every ranged caster.  Kill it and the mana comes back to those nearby.  It only steals mana once.
  • In LFR mode I personally would kill Purple > Yellow > Red > Black.  Again, Green is completely harmless!!!!!!  If you can’t manage to AoE the adds, then killing Black before red might be a good idea.
  • You can hug for every ooze combination.  Only Blue requires you to move (to dps the mana void).

Hagara the Storm Binder [MMO Champion | Icy Veins]

  • This is a 3 phase fight.  There is a ‘main phase’ and then 2 other ‘special phases’ – an Ice Phase and a Lightning Phase.  During special phases she is immune to all damage.
  • Focused Assault does a lot of damage to the 1 tank so be ready with extra healing.  She doesn’t move while channeling it so move back away from her.  Move towards the edge so by the time a special phase comes, you are on the edge.
  • In the main phase hug up.  Dispell Shattered Ice and have a ranged ‘tank’ Ice Lance.
  • Ice Phase:
    • She covers most of the platform in a big bubble.  Get out of it and hug at a Binding Crystal.  Stay there until the walls have spawned.
    • She casts four walls of icy spikes that rotate clockwise around the platform.  Group and move around between them, paying attention at all times.
    • Binding Crystals appear that you need to dps while running round and round.  Destroy all four to end the phase and go back to normal.  Don’t risk getting hit by a wall to do more damage.
  • Lightning Phase:
    • Kill adds near one of the Lightning Conductors so it overloads.  It will cause someone to be Electrocuted.
    • Create a chain of people to spread Lightning between Lightning Conductors to overload them.  Some healing is needed here.
  • Repeat Main > Special > Main > Other Special until dead.

 

Furtive Father Winter: Crib Sheets!

Todays post comes to you courtesy of Glady from thereadycheck.com who has produced an awesome and unique piece of art work for me as my Furtive Father Winter gift:


Behold as the mighty yet elegant Morrighan smites the weepy Deathwing with the holy powers of penance, aided by the fierce and resourceful “crib sheets!!”

Happy Holidays dear Morrighan (and readers)!! I hope you have the very best of Winter Veils, and a happy new year filled with much smiting of weepy bosses atop infant bedding!

(Check out my own gift to Ringo of Flinthammer Hall as well as all the other bloggers involved in the Furtive Father Winter fun and games over at Blog Azeroth.)

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑