PlayNotes Testing Testing

I’ve spared you the actual notes, (until now) but somehow on Monday my coffee fueled brain went all crazy on World of Warcraft thoughts, and I wanted to write a well composed post from my notes, but you know, that just isn’t me.

Then I saw this great E3 summation by   
and really enjoyed the way it was a list of sorts, but a greatly entertaining one.   I like lists. I make them every day. 

This led my twisty mind to devise an experiment wherein I will take notes while I play and just pop them into this space after the session.  I personally enjoy reading blogs not just for the Big Ideas people have, – and there are some brilliant game bloggers out there having them!- but for seeing what people think about games as they play them, because sometimes they feel the same way I do and sometimes they give a glimpse of other ways to approach a game.

What to call this experiment?  I used the title “Afterplay” previously, and it’s descriptive but somehow I don’t like it.  I’m going to go with PlayNotes, though I also came up with the obnoxiously funny Raw Thots. 

I’ll start Sunday and will play each game in my rotation for the week, taking notes as I do and dropping them in here.  Boring yet fun! Hey, it’s summertime!

PlayNotes Issue #1  (So you can skip the rest of the week if this makes you buggy.  However if this makes you buggy, all my posts probably do, and you don’t read this blog anyway.  Hmmpf.

I’ve been leveling my WOW Paladin and decided to just push her forward to the top, because I have the rare opportunity with the guild I’m in to do the biggies: Mythics, Heroics, Raids!!!  I’m quite certain they’ll make me a better Paladin and Player. 

I have been having a great time working in the lower areas of Azeroth, and really sort of hated to abandon them to move forward in the game to areas up ahead I don’t enjoy so much.  This thinking led to my disjointed notes:

For me, Wow is almost 4 different games

From the beginning to Northrend.   Great maps, love all the dungeons, storylines make each area unique. 

Pandaria, where they take away flight for awhile for the first time and dungeons become uninteresting.  The grind of Dailies appears.  Rep grinds galore.  The grind of the Timeless Isle to get decent gear to move forward.  GRIND-O-MATIC begins!

Draenor  Once again no flight till they decide you’ve earned it.  Killed Inscription making it a bizarre little gambling game for the Inscriptionist.  I do not know why people didn’t complain more about this.   Crafting generally takes a big shot for actual crafters in order to give non-crafting types their very own insta-gear, but only three pieces.   Here is where I thought crafting was just gathering endlessly and dropping it all down a hole to come out the other side as…not much.  As I’ve said elsewhere, I craft to make things for other people, and this was all just me, me me.    You absolutely had to do the gear grind in the Tanaan Jungle, whether your character is of the gear grinding type or no-you could not move an inch in Legion without a certain level of gear rating.   Something they did right but refused to go further with: The Garrison.  This was wildly popular in beta, and many more features were added than originally intended because people loved it and wanted more.  Still, they wouldn’t add guild features, or make it easy for others to visit, or let you customize it in any way other than by the choices of your garrison buildings and where you placed them in the compound.   Interestingly, they offered some decorative packages for Holidays, which could have been expanded in so many ways to let people at least choose decorative packages and feel like they were making the only real home they’d ever been given in the game their home.   

Legion   Again, a long wait and grind to fly.  Crawl on your belly like a snake if you want to fly, player!  Here they actually killed crafting, in essence.  Not just a grind to advance, but roadblocks everywhere, including making you go in raids and dungeons to advance in your crafts.  Sometimes game developers seem to hate crafters, but not this much.  So they make you do raids, but don’t allow random Looking For Raid grouping because…why?  This is the first time ever class changes arrived with a wallop, making actually most classes not any fun to play.  I usually just adjust to changes for classes, adapt and move on, but man, they whacked everyone.  Except my Druid who was once again great.  Awful Dungeons, that you’re REQUIRED to go through over and over. None of the game areas are enjoyable to explore.  Stories are meh.   Endless artifact grind.  So you don’t get to enhance your character with new skills anymore. Your weapon, which looks like everyone else’s weapon, (unless you grind to get a different appearance) gets all the glory!   You are just a puppet.  I shall call Legion the Rats On A Wheel Approach To Gaming.

Ta da!  More than was on the page because blah blah blah goes the mind.  See ya Sunday, Rift Day.

Legion Report From The Dead Duck

I’m not dead all of the time, but it certainly does happen far more than I would normally experience.  I’m not certain if I’m not playing the Havoc Demon efficiently or if the world is a bit harder to navigate.  Both are factors, I’m sure.

I noticed on the Beta Boards someone else saying that the Demon Hunter seemed almost all powerful in the starter area, but as soon as they were out in the larger world, they were having a significantly different experience.   As I quest and get better gear, my survivability is improving.  I still need to tweak my rotation and play.

Demon Hunter

I’m liking the class.  With all of the movement options as part of the play style, the character is incredibly mobile.   I still haven’t mastered the Art of The Glide, which is causing me problems every time I have to return to the Class Order Hall on the Fel Hammer.  You need to leap and glide from the edge of Dalaran’s floating city over to a platform, then transport to the Fel Hammer.  Luckily a bat creature catches me and drops me on the platform each time.

I’m planning on playing this character through to 110 and beyond.  Having a brand new class to play in an all new area makes the game extra new and exciting for me.   Normally, I’d want to try the classes I’m familiar with as well, but I think my time is better spent leveling and gearing my Live characters as close to iLevel 680 as I can get them before the expansion comes out.


The city looks as it always does, except that the Underbelly is an Instant Death situation for non-PVP players like myself.  After exploring briefly (I thought a quest called The Royal Summons must be down there), I could barely get my character out of the Underbelly alive, with multiple deaths and tries for the exit.  Ouch.  Beware the Underbelly.

I have not found a single repair npc anywhere out in the world so at this time you always have to return to Dalaran to repair and sell junk. 

The Open World Approach

This is one of my favorite things.  You are able at any time to go to any area of the Broken Isles to quest.  You’re never under the level of the mobs because it all adjusts to your current level.

One thing this does is, it spreads the population out over the entire Broken Isles.  You’ll never be the only one dragging your lowbie character or alt through an area everyone else has already done.   There will always be other people there questing or leveling or looking for resources.  Even at the top, when people are at 110, those Daily World Quests will have players all over the map.  It just seems like a great way to make the world more viable, and populated, and fun.


My Demon Hunter appears to have no self heals at all which is a bad situation.  I think each class should have some sort of heal, in addition to having consumable options for staying alive.

I picked up Alchemy and Herbalism to give her a shot.  For Alchemy, you could buy the Apprentice level skill then get a quest right away to get Legion Level crafting.  With Herbalism, you can pick up herbs in the Broken Isles with Apprentice level skills.

Very exciting to me is, while you’re out questing, there are npcs with Alchemy and Herbalism quests, with materials for completion being available right in the area you’re in.  I love that as a way to integrate the professions into the game world once more.

One of these quests gave me a recipe that heals for 500,000 instead of the usual 68k.  I’m sure the ingredients won’t be easy to find, but it increases that treasure hunt feeling you get when you’re looking for resources as well as killing your way through the world.

Unrelated to Alchemy, but I have gotten two Cloth drops from mobs so far, and I love that much better than just cranking out some cloth as a Daily task.  Adventure! Discovery! Treasures galore!  I’m in!