There’s Something About the Dungeon Finder

I can’t seem to put my finger on it, but let me explain a few situations.

Situation 1

I queued up for about 40 minutes.  I finally enter a group.  It’s 4 other people from some leet-ass raiding guild.  The way they chat, it’s almost like they’re stoned out of their minds.  They’ve been wiping on the third boss of Heroic Throne of the Tides, it would seem.  I try with them, we wipe once.  I insist that they’re stoned because they keep saying random things in caps, and all of a sudden a vote kick comes up with my mage’s name on it, citing reason: “alsdkjfasf.”  I get kicked out, and left to queue up again for 40 minutes.

Huh.

Situation 2

I queued up for a Heroic Blackrock Caverns, and joined a group that’s been wiping on Corla, the laser-beam boss.  We wiped a few more times, and the paladin tank left.  We queued up and got another tank, and downed her.  We started wiping on the Karsh, the boss in the forge, and the tank left.  We queued up, and the next tank we got is the tank that just left.  Everyone lol’s, and the tank leaves again.  We queued up again, waiting for about 20 minutes, and the tank that came in was the first tank we had when we were wiping on Corla.  We manage to one-shot the rest of the dungeon, and the Hourglass caster trinket dropped from the last boss.  Tank rolled need on it, won, and left.

Umm.

Situation 3

I queued up for 45 minutes, and got into a Stonecore group.  They’re a group of 4 from the same realm.  They haven’t even downed the first boss, but as soon as I come in, they already give up and dissolve the entire group so they can re-queue on their own.  I have to queue again for myself, 45 minutes worth.

Umm.

Situation 4

Today, I queued for 50 minutes and got into a Vortex Pinnacle group.  They’ve been wiping on Altairus, the dragon boss with the cyclones.  We wiped once, and one of the DPS tells me to stop failing on cyclones.  I took less damage than him that fight, and used slow fall every time.  I don’t even bother trying to defend myself, because the next wipe, I’m the only one alive for most of the fight.  That shut him up.  He dropped group with the other DPS, and instantly got replacements.  We one-shot the rest of the bosses without incident.

HA!

Hard Heroics are Hard

The moral of today’s lesson is to be persistent and tenacious in your random dungeon exploits.  It’s a lot more difficult this time around, especially with the gear reset, so you just have to be patient, and find ways to maximize your situation.  Long queue times? Go gather while waiting, or grind out mats for that craftable upgrade.  Hell, minimize the game and go play something else while you wait.

Better yet, go find a good guild or instancing group on your server who are willing to learn with you.  Cuts off the hassle mentioned in the previous paragraphs above.

And for Light’s sake, don’t drop group if you’re making progress on learning the boss fights.  Once you learn it the first time, the next ones get easier.  If you’re always dropping, you’re never learning.

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The All-Purpose Pre-Heroic Cloth Caster Gear List

In Cataclysm, entry into heroics requires an average ilvl greater than 328.  Instead of linking to individual items, I will simply link to the wowhead search page pertaining to that item slot, so you can compare them with each other.  I’ve also pre-emptively excluded spirit gear, as the stat is pretty much useless for mages.  If you’re a Shadow Priest looking for a good list, click on the desired link anyway, and change the settings so that Spirit is removed from the filter, and is added to the stat weight.  Enjoy!

Armor

Weapons

Off-Hand

Neck/Finger

Trinkets, and a pre-raiding loot list to come.

Chronoclysm

“We do not know if the Caverns of Time have always been accessible to mortals. Truly, it is impossible to tell as the Timeless One is in perpetual motion, changing our timeways as he sees fit. What you see now may very well not exist tomorrow. You may wake up and have no memory of this place.”

Much to our dismay, Operation: Gnomeregan was a complete disaster.  The High Tinker’s fiery words bore into the hearts of our brothers and sisters, but ultimately the fate of I, the Frost-Mage Bashertin Fizzleblock, Death Knight Wimzig Wintersprug, and Priestess Uxie Umbrastorm, became intertwined by the sneakiness of the nefarious Mekgineer Thermaplugg.

It was originally planned as a backdoor sabotage, led by myself, to disable the automated aerial defenses that prevented the gnomish flying machines to provide air cover for the frontal assault.  A slip through the radiation vent while under the protection of the combined magical forces of my Ice Barrier, Wimzig’s Anti-Magic Shell, and Uxie’s Light Screen would allow us to penetrate the secondary control room directly.

“It is strange, I know… Most mortals cannot actually comprehend what they see here, as often, what they see is not anchored within their own perception of reality.”

It would seem that the covert operation was a failure from the start.  Some spy had gotten word out of the operation, and Thermaplugg’s guards were already waiting for us.  We were outnumbered, and captured.

We were left alone to die in an isolated prison with a lone vent, which gradually filled the room with the very irradiation from which our people fled.  We had no time to waste.  We needed to react accordingly.

“There are only two truths to be found here: First, that time is chaotic, always in flux, and completely malleable and second, perception does not dictate reality.”

I threw my hands up into the air and uttered the words for a teleportation spell, but the effect was blocked by a space-distortion matrix that Thermaplugg apparently set up; an equivalent to a mage ward.  Uxie suggested that I try to imbue her Wormhole generator with Time-altering properties, so that we would be able to bypass the space-block by travelling through time itself.

I had no choice.  It was either escape through time, or die trying.  I concentrated on the remote that Uxie held in her hand, and Wimzig kept us in an anti-magic barrier that would only hold us for the duration of the spell.  The wormhole opened.  We jumped in.

“As custodians of time, we watch over and care for Nozdormu’s realm. The master is away at the moment, which means that attempts are being made to dramatically alter time. The master never meddles in the affairs of mortals but instead corrects the alterations made to time by others. He is reactionary in this regard.”

The wormhole sent us through a strange tunnel of sorts.  I cannot explain it myself, but it was as if the three of us had seen random blots of the entirety of Azeroth’s history unravel before us in accelerated motion, like a series of vague photos making up a convoluted collage of events past, present, and unknown.

“These tunnels that you see are called timeways. They are infinite in number. The ones that currently exist in your reality are what the master has deemed as ‘trouble spots.’ These trouble spots may differ completely in theme but they always share a cause. That is, their existence is a result of the same temporal disturbance. Remember that should you venture inside one…”

The three of us woke up in a daze inside a cave in the middle of the Tanaris Desert.  We were greeted by a pair of gnomes in gold-coloured robes.  They explained everything that had happened.  How we had appeared out of nowhere through one of their timeways.  How their supervisors were unable to pinpoint the origin of our travels.  How the collapse of the timeway through which we had appeared prevented us from ever going back home again…if it still existed at all.

The female of the pair shifted into an amber drake, and showed us our new existence: an Azeroth shattered by the Destroyer.  A world forever in ruin by the Earth-Warder’s rampage and emergence from the depths of the world.

Uxie said she would rather have died back in Gnomeregan.  I’m not so sure myself.

“For normal maintenance of time, the Keepers of Time are sufficient caretakers. We are able to deal with most ordinary disturbances. I speak of little things, such as rogue mages changing something in the past to elevate their status or wealth in the present.”

The Keepers of Time granted us temporary shelter in their cavern, in exchange for assisting them with the maintenance of their timeways, which ranged from thwarting chronomages and time-traveling engineers, to more major recurring problems such as timeways threatened by who were described to us as the Infinite Dragonflight.  We were gradually accepted by the Keepers as one of their own.

Ultimately, there wasn’t anything that the Keepers could do to return us to our previous realm of reality, as it may no longer exist.  The only thing that matters now is that we continue to assist them until they can find a suitable solution.

Wish us luck, dear reader, if such a thing exists.

My mage, DK, and priest were all transferred to Feathermoon.  The above is essentially the story of how they arrived there.  I look forward to my experiences on an RP server for the duration of this expansion and beyond.

Worst. Launch. Ever.

Bad news we already know: I am still without a functioning computer suitable for Cataclysm.  However, I’ve always been able to play WoW on a P4 on lowest settings and 600 resolution.  However…

Crappy News: I am without internet.  The morning after the midnight launch, my house was devoid of not only internet services, but cable services AND phone services.  A big middle finger to Rogers/Shaw, easily the worst communications company in Canada, and possibly the world.  When the majority

Hell, I can’t even make posts without having to drive all the way to my local starbucks, which is about 7 minutes away.

Fuck My Life: Car’s in the shop.  I have to wait for my parents to come home in the evening so I can borrow their car so I can go out.  This is getting kinda ridiculous.  I can’t even work at home, nor can I even drive out to the location where I’m supposed to work if I am unable to work at home!

So I’m pretty much not working, not playing wow, lying in my bed, trying to read the Cataclysm novel to pass my time.

Curse my speedreading ability: Finished the Shattering in about 3 hours.  It was fine.  Go read it if you like.  The mention of gnomes here and there is cool, but we had an ENTIRE BOOK dedicated to taurens.  That leaves gnomes as the final race to not get any sort of significant screentime.  I hate you blizz, seriously ;_;

WORST LAUNCH EXPERIENCE EVER: At least, personally.  The next time you guys complain about griefing, bugs not letting you finish quests, or that jackass that pulled the entire hallway in Throne of the Tides, think of me, and kindly try to enjoy yourselves.  Okay?