Toys and Relics and Scribe-crafted Bling from Cataclysm Inscription Recipes

Now that the final countdown has started for Cataclysm, as the earthquakes become more frequent, and the elementals start popping up everywhere, my thoughts have turned to professions. I’d been wondering how Inscription would fare, given that they’ve changed our glyph usage so that it’s buy once and know it forever, which will long-term reduce that facet of the viability of inscription as a money-making profession.

Thanks to the good folks over at WoWHead, I’ve gotten my question answered: we’ll be making toys and the key component to one of the new buff foods. Some nice relics for ourselves, and shoulder enchants that are better than the rep enchants as well. But so far, no sure-fire best selling items, unless it turns out we are the primary source for level 85 offhands for the first few months of the expansion.


Mysterious Fortune Cards

Now, these items are interesting. When you make a Mysterious Fortune Card, you can not be sure of exactly what you will end up with. No, it's not another Darkmoon Card redux. That's further down this page. Instead, you end up with a Fortune Card. Most of the time, you get the white item that provides a fortune but also acts as the primary material for creating a Fortune Cookie, a buff food that provides you with 96k health and mana, and a 90 stamina/90 other useful stat buff for an hour. But there is also a chance to create an uncommon card that vendors for 20g, a rare card that vendors for 50g, or, drum roll please: one of two epic quality cards that vendor for 1,000 G or  5,000 G. Now that's what I call fortunate!

BoE Gear

Scribe-Specific Enchants



What Will Cataclysm Bring for Me?

Like most everyone who plays WoW, I am excited about all the shiny new content and explorations that Cataclysm will bring for us.

But this time around, the expansion also brings up a lot of uncertainty for me. Because I am in a very different place — in game and out — than I was at the last turn-of-the-expansion.

That Was Then

I was secure in the knowledge that although I no longer wanted to druid heal, I would definitely be playing my druid main, as per usual. I was enjoying being a lazy guild member without any responsibilities, and crossing my fingers my casual guild would work out for raiding in the expansion, even if it was just at a slower pace, given our good times in Kara. My hours at work allowed me to have a regular raiding schedule, as I rarely had to stay late unexpectedly. All my characters were on the same server were I’d started out playing WoW, except for the shadow priest horde alt I rarely popped onto, as she was stranded on a friend’s server with nothing to do.

This is Now

Now I have three 80s Alliance-side (Boomkin, Shadow Priest, Mage) with a warlock at 70. Horde-side, on a separate server, I have four 80s (Shadow Priest, Boomkin, Shaman, Mage) with a warlock at 72. Horde-side, I’m an officer in a large guild that completed all of WotLK’s raiding content, including a number of 10-man ICC hard modes. Heck, I even got to kill Algalon! Alliance-side, I’ve found myself a great friendly guild that had been doing some casual raiding, and enjoy the camaraderie and conversation (inclusive of G and on Vent and on Twitter.)

This Monday, I headed back in to work after five glorious weeks of time off. And despite heading in bright and early each day, I am not getting home until 6:30 each night due to the workload. This has meant no raiding anywhere, no NaNoWriMo writing time. And no blog time. In other words: MEH.

So What’s Next?

With Cataclysm only a month away, I’m not sure how things are going to pan out. How much can I get done with only a few short hours to play each night after work? We still need to eat dinner and have outside of game time after all. Even if I concentrate only on my two primary characters at first (Alliance Boomkin and Horde Shadow Priest), I’ll still need to sort out daily quests for the others (cooking/fishing/professions).

Having just taken all this time off, I won’t really get to have a big chunk of time to play until my time off around the holidays, at the end of December. So in all likelihood, I’ll be leveling the slowest I’ve ever leveled. And will have my attention split between two toons I love, instead of being able to focus my energies on just one of them. This will be an adjustment for sure.

Both guilds are planning to kick the raiding tires in Q1 2011. So at least with that I do feel I’ll have time to level up and gear up. Then work in the alts as time allows. But as it stands, I don’t really know yet what my availability will look like as far as raiding goes. Or how I am going to feel about these characters at 85, having not gotten into BETA to try things out for myself.

So like everyone else who didn’t get a sneak peek via BETA, I’ll just have to play it by ear and hope that I do like how things turn out int he end for my ladies. Que sera sera, whatever will be will be. I’m just hoping that somehow I’ll find a way to give both of my favorite toons the attention they deserve.

Thoughts on the New Guild Achievements and Other New Cataclysm Details

If you're looking to not learn anything at all about Cataclysm prior to its launch this is not the post for you. It only contains, however, reflections on information officially released by Blizzard during its recent fansite/blog day on campus.

As the clock struck Midnight on Saturday night, Wowhead and World of Raids came out with amazing treasure troves of new (and expanded upon) information about the upcoming Cataclysm expansion. All copy in sky blue below is from World of Raids.

What I'm Excited About

  • Guild talents are not going to be implemented.Instead, guilds will be automatically rewarded with perks.
  • Guild currency has been scrapped. Guild rewards will be unlocked by completing guild achievements. Rewards will be purchased with gold, and anyone in the guild can purchase the reward once it's unlocked.

These changes make me ecstatic. Why? because I was envisioning what a nightmare it was going to be for the Officer team to decide upon guild talents and awarding of guild currency across a large, diverse guild. Instead, the idea of rewarding folks for longevity in their guild will still be implemented, but without an accompanying administrative burden on the guild's leadership.

  • Path of the Titans has been scrapped and will not be implemented.
  • Instead Blizzard will focus on improving the glyph system, as they feel it didn't quite hit the intended goals in Wrath.

I know lots of folks are upset about this, but it started to sound like a sidegame grind that would be a must-do rather than an innovative and fun add-on. And it also seemed like it had the potential to be Blizz biting off more than they could chew from a class balancing perspective. I'm excited that Blizz *is* however going to take a look at the glyph system and add in medium glyphs as well as taking a look at some classes who have weak minor glyph selections. Please to be seeing green fire for warlocks and some fun minor glyphs for shadow priests. NOTE: lack of needing reagents for a spell does not equal fun!

  • Archaeology will now help to "dig into the lore of the game" — essentially being used as a vehicle for storytelling.

I was a little bummed when I initially read this but eventually felt better after reading some blue replies Sunday on the topic. Because, of course, I thought this might mean they were doing away with the promised vanity pets and toys. And I had personally been truly looking forward to having this sort of mini exploration game, with shiny new pets, to tide me over during future lulls.

What I'm Excited About That Also Worries Me

Guild Reputation

  • This is a newly announced feature; players will gain reputation with their guild similar to how other reputations work in the game.
  • As you contribute to the guild by completing quests, killing bosses, winning rated BGs or completing guild achievements, you will gain reputation.
  • The best guild rewards will require having exalted reputation with your guild.
  • Guild reputation is on a per-character basis, so you'll have to gain rep for each character you have in the guild before you can buy rewards with it.

Guild Achievements

  • These will be integral to the reward and level systems. Completing one can unlock rewards as well as give the guild experience.
  • Guild achievements are earned and owned by the guild, so once it has it, it never goes away — even if all members who participated leave the guild.
  • When viewing a guild achievement it will display the members who participated in earning that achievement.
  • To earn a guild achievement you must have 7 of 10 or 20 of 25 players in the raid be members of your guild.

For me guild reputation and guild achievements are both a can of worms. Why? For a few reason. First, I think it means we are going to see folks who were on their fence about their guild (especially with the uncertainty around what the raiding changes will mean to their guild) may jump ship sooner rather than later. The idea being no one wants to "waste" those precious first few weeks/months of guild achievements in a guild they're not sure about. And not wanting to be the new guy with no guild rep somewhere a few months in to the expansion.

My other concern is guild achievements will become the new item to war over in guild splits. Once they are implemented, I worry that in a case where a guild split seems imminent, you could end up in a situation akin to a messy divorce — with one angry person with their finger on the hot button kicking out a bunch of players and keeping the guild achievements for themself, and thus starting a blood feud amongst players.

You may think that sounds like crazy talk, but if you've ever been in the midst of a large progressed raiding guild imploding, I can tell you it got nasty back in the day, and that's just when the MC BOEs in the guild's official bank alt's bags were all that was at stake. Personally, I love the spirit that is intended with it — reward players for sticking with a guild, and make the decision to bounce from guild-to-guild a herder one to make, by meaning folks will lose out on the perks their existing guild has earned.

So this one will go on my wait and see list. I will remain hopeful, and can't wait until BETA is in full swing and we start to see folks poking around with the many new guild-related changes.

What piqued your interest the most in this mega preview?

P.S. And if you haven't taken a look at it yet, check out the new zone preview up on Youtube. Stormwind in particular looks amazing.

Friday Five: 5 Ways I’m Getting Ready for Cataclysm

Today's Friday Five inspired by the Blog Azeroth Shared Topic suggested by Nexdominus.

  1. With the help of guildies and some awesome WoW tweeps, I made myself a fancy bank alt guild. It also doubles as a place my Alliance friends can come hang out on new lowbie hordlings. We've got candy! And cobra pets in the bank! You know you want to reroll!
  2. I'm making myself some bags for my goblin hunter. And trying to decide what profession she'll have. I still lack a Blacksmith so that's tempting. 
  3. I've been looking into friendly places to make my worgens since I'm not sure how active my Alliance server/guild will be in the expansion. Right now it seems my entire Alliance guild (those that are left here) are on hiatus. And the server as a whole doesn't seem to be as active as my horde server is. WTB Alliance server!
  4. I cleaned out my bags across all my characters. Even the ones I don't play on my old horde server. Leveling=need moar room in bags! 
  5. Last and most expensively, I am working on maxing out all of my professions. Yes, if history is repeated, they will add some easier skill up recipes in the expansion to get folks past the last 25 or so points of their profession. But that will cost new materials that I know I will want to be spending on learning shiny new skill points above 450!

BONUS: As previously noted herein, I completed my motorbike tour of Azeroth, thus earning the World Explorer achievement. Those screenshots will get to go in the scrapbook of memories once things are torn asunder.

How about you? What're you doing to get prepared for Cataclysm?