Have I told you lately that I love you? That I hold no one else above you?

I can’t gush too much because, hello, spoilers.

But I can say two quick things and then give you a screenshot of happiness.

First thing. Last night I started doing the starter area in Pandaria with my Druid, but before too long decided to follow my nose and sniff out herbs. I explored a lot without ever looking at a map, and found herbs, herbs and more herbs. I quickly got my Inscription to 600, made two Scrolls of Wisdom now (24 hour cooldown, but got the first in before midnight last night), and know two of the new minor Glyphs. So, if you are on Azuremyst and want your Warrior’s Charge to leave a flame trail, or you want your Priest to be looking like a Vyrkul when something or other spell goes off, I’m yer Drood.

The thing of it is, all that exploring left me very, very happy with the land of Pandaria, and I’ll tell you why.

You’ll likely see a lot said about the beauty, the architecture, the design. That’s all nice, I agree.

The big thing to me, the thing that feels RIGHT, is it feels like a land people actually LIVE in!

There are orchards with trees in bloom and peaceful farmers. No mobs, no flames, no distress… just people going about the business of daily life.

Yes a lot of the land, by necessity, is crammed with dangerous areas for questing.

But there are also areas that are there because, you know, people need food. Beer needs barley and hops. Flowers come from somewhere before being picked and placed in a bowl on a table.

There is life happening in Pandaria, and it’s something that I’ve often felt was missing in previous expansions, by necessity of cramming quests into a limited amount of space.

The space in Pandaria is generous… and even on the panda starting area, on the back of a giant sea turtle, this attention to detail of the life and loves and daily work of a people is given consideration… to the improvement of the game.

Okay, so the ecospace seems a bit tiny for the Virmin… who among us didn’t give out a laugh at what we saw deep underground in the Vermin-infested carrot patch? I know Alex drug me over to show me in delight.

So, my first thing is, thank you Blizzard for giving me a land that feels like a settled land with history that supports a people, rather than a coldly calculated quest zone.

My second thing is, whoever designed Pet Battles needs to be given a raise, and then somebody slap the shit out of ‘em. Not necessarily in that order.

Pet Battles are so good, so awesome, so perfect and so ADDICTING that if this shit isn’t the single greatest threat to raid teams, I don’t know what is.

The pets, the achievements, the sheer quantity of critters to seek out and capture, the swapping nature of the game, the tactics and brute force, the balancing act between winning by overpowering and having someone weak enough to give a wounding shot but leave the target alive for capture… wow.

Cassie had no interest in it. Cassie wasn’t in the slightest interested in it.

So who was it that spent most of last night capturing pets in Elwynn Forest and Westfall until she had a rare of every critter in both zones (except the cat in Elwynn, damn the slow spawn rate), and had used a Bunny as her main combat pet? Or, as she put it, ‘That’s one bad bunny!”

Who was it that told me, after her 40th tamed crab in Westfall, that she thought there WERE no rares out of respect for Ghostcrawler? But kept on trying until she finally got one?

She’s got achievements for capturing over 100 critters now, and I still don’t have a third pet past level 2. Mostly because I feel like I really should get my Druid to combat level before getting too deep into Pet Battles and lose it all.

There is going to be a twelve step program for Pet Battles. We’re going to see guild interventions. Mark my words. You will lose raiders over this. They would’ve been ready on time, but they were collecting critters in Kalimdor, and didn’t have time to farm for flasks or food.

I’m telling you. It’s coming.

And finally, this.

Just, this.

While I was exploring, I came across this gentle soul, taking his pet fish for a walk.

That’s all he’s doing… he’s taking the fish for a little walk.

It’s little moments of insane awesome like this, that are the reasons you need to stop and LOOK when you’re playing, or you might miss something that’ll gobsmack you.

Oh, and one last thing.

“An’ this one’s for Gizmo and Socks, you bastards!”

Best. Line. Ever.

 

19 Responses to “WoW: Have I Told You Lately…”
  1. zwingli says:

    I’m loving this expansion thus far. Yeah, I’m addicted to the pet battles as well!

    Z

  2. Steak says:

    “And I don’t care about your weird, dead face.” = the best Horde line so far, and quite possibly the most romantic thing ever uttered.

    • spinks says:

      I also liked “The alliance outnumber us 30 to 1 and we, the Horde, are allied with monkeys!” (and I thought “We’re allied with monkeys, how awesome is that?”)

  3. Gameldar says:

    Those scouting quests were so annoying … until that point!

    But I have green tea leaves coming out my ears! I need golden lotuses to make my alchemy trinket, but haven’t seen one since I could actually pick them!

    But yes enjoying the whole atmosphere of it immensely, and I haven’t even left jade forest yet.

    • bigbearbutt says:

      Cassie was in the same boat as you, she got the trinket recipe and needed 3 lotus, but we were lucky, she found one and was too low level to get it, but she stood guard while I ran over from the other side of the zone and got it for her!

      She has her trinket now, and in all the herbing we’ve both done, we have gotten a total of 6 of the Golden Lotus. So, yeah, not so many in the first zone.

      But that’s nothing near as bad as the Mote of harmony drop rate. I want my staff, damnit, and I’ve got TWO MOTES. Damnit.

  4. Taikuutta says:

    All those people that have been dissing the whole “Kung Fu panda” and have left, we need to not tell them about how cool this expansion is. Place is already crowded enough, and those of us having a good time need our space. I’m loving this right now.

  5. Alburet says:

    I agree with you on almost all points. I am not addicted to the pet battles but my Girlfriend is. I love te way the zones feel that lived in look. If you havent done the panda monk starting quest chain I loved it.

  6. Beshara says:

    I’ve been having some fun with the new expansion. Didn’t get to play much the morning of release. I’ve been enjoying Jade Forest on my priest. I’m trying to take it slow, because I want to chronicle the questing experience. The character recently got into my head with a story, so I’m trying to write down details before I forget them. The area is really crowded, but the nice thing is certain quest mobs can be hit by multiple people not in a group and count for all of them. The story so far has been very enjoyable.

    If herbing is that nice, I may take my rogue out there and work on her inscription. I don’t want to spend money leveling inscription if I can help it.

    Pet battles are extremely addictive. I haven’t tried to catch uncommons of each pet, will probably only do that with favorite ones. I have too many pets I want to level as it is. Also rolled a panda monk knowing I want to level one eventually. The starting area is gorgeous. I’ve enjoyed both activities immensely while waiting for jade forest to clear out some.

    • bigbearbutt says:

      In the first zone, Herbs are everywhere. I stop every time I see one and go get it, but they are so plentiful that Cassie is starting to turn up her nose and leave them be.

      Yes, they are THAT plentiful.

      Me, I am figuring the spawn rate has to get nerfed sooner or later, so I’m gonna herb em all!

  7. Malk says:

    Been reading for a while but first comment: hello!
    BBB have you found the quest that awards a goldfish-inna-bubble so you can have your own to take out for walks?
    Admittedly that and the Gizmo, Socks line have been 2 of my fave things as well so far! The quest line immediately reminded me of Harry Dresden and couldn’t stop giggling! Those BSTRDS!

    • bigbearbutt says:

      Yep, but I didn’t want to spoil things too much.

      I also happened across an 86 Elite NPC wandering around, neutral not aggressive, with about 950k health. It was one of the Hyena people with a shotgun… and I thought, well, what the hell, I’m a feral Druid. So I killed him! And he dropped an ilevel 400 trinket that let’s me summon his to fight with me for ten minutes as my buddy, with a 1 hour cooldown.

      Keep your eyes OPEN out there people, there is cool shit EVERYWHERE.

      I can’t remember the dudes name, but if you check my Armory page, you can see it, his name os on the trinket. It’s like Dergan not-So-Smart, or something. I can’t check, I be at work. :)

  8. Theodoxus says:

    The alchemy stone dropped on my third kill on my priest, but he isn’t an herber, so I logged in my druid – alch/herb and started gathering herbs – insane amount of herbs, to be sure.

    Wasn’t until I was a quarter into 86 that the stone quest dropped for him. Have only found one Lotus though – but haven’t explored outside of Jade Forest, and I’m patient.

    I do have nearly half a Hyjal herb bag of tea leaves though. My Inscriptionist is just hungering for me to send him some… that he’s also an alchy just means he needs that much more.

    I don’t know how different the questlines are between horde and alliance, but I’ve really been enjoying the unique styled quests – the scouting ones were a lot of fun, and the Monastery quests were great too. Can’t believe I’ve only barely scratched the surface on the questing…

    I’m just sad it’s so linear – with Cata, you had two zones to level up, at least you could change things up a bit… this seems more like ‘Jade Forest 10x’ or Dungeons… Kinda meh about the replay-ability of JF. I’ve decided, at least so far, to quest on my gatherers and dungeon on my crafters.

  9. So far I am loving MoP. It’s a breath of fresh air to the tired xpac that was Cata. The developers/designers have done an outstanding job…and I’ve not even done any of the 85-90 quests (except for the first few that get you out to Pandaria).

    I spent much of the first few days doing pet battles. I have done a little under 400 battles (in the wild), have caught a little under 200 pets and have caught 20+ rares. Sadly, I didn’t pay attention to achievements right away. If I had my “catches” would equal my “battles”. The only thing I’m disliking so far are the battles against other players. The game is matching teams in a bad way and players are taking advantage of it. Nothing sucks more than signing up for a battle with 3 level 5 pets and fighting against a level 8 and two level 1s. I have lost more PvP pet battles than I care to count. I hope Blizz can figure out how to beat the players that are stacking the odds in their favor. I’ll most likely go back to doing just battles in the wild and leave the PvP alone until I can get some pets to max level. I have a long way to go for that. Right now my highest is only level 9.

    Oh, please let Cassie know about some addons I found that will make PetBattle life much more pleasant for her (and you too of course). The first is PetJournal Enhanced, found at CurseForge. This one gives you a few more options for sorting the pet list that the game doesn’t include. The second is BattlePetCount (CurseForge). This one shows the quality, and count, of battle pets you own in your tooltip as you hover your mouse over pets in your pet list and over pets both in the wild and in battle. The third one is PetBattleQualityGlow (WowInterface). This one will let you know what quality pet you are fighting by adding a slight glow of the quality color to the pet’s icon, as well as show the name of the pet in the quality color, in the battle window.

    While I was searching for the sites to get these at just now, I came across two others I will try out today. One is called PetBattleTeams (CurseForge) that allows you to save up to 60 teams. And the other is BattlePetsList (CurseForge) that shows you a list of available pet types in an area. I’ll let you know how those last two work…unless you or Cassie want to try them for yourselves.

    I created a panda monk last night and got him through the starter zone. That zone is beautiful. I really enjoyed it. Although, I’ll probably create another panda just to go through it again. I didn’t pay attention to much of the story as I went and really should have.

    • bigbearbutt says:

      I can’t believe how awesomely helpful that is. I assure you, I will be rushing to download those addons as soon as I get home!

    • Cassieann says:

      I just downloaded the first three you have been using and love them!

      Although, when I finally engaged the rare cat that I’ve been trying to get since Tuesday, I now KNEW it was a rare that my overpowerful pet accidentally killed by 2 points /cry :(

      But seriously, being able to sort by level so my leveled up pets are at the top is wonderful and being able to see which ones I have when mousing over in the wild, rather than having to open the panel and try to find them is just great.

      Thanks so much for sharing!

  10. Navimie says:

    Go Cassie! I know how she feels! I just got my rare spirit crab but luckily not after that many tries. I spend more time trying to get different pets instead of levelling too! I am loving pet battles :D Perfect 5 minute wow!

  11. Minos says:

    The best laugh I’ve had so far was “As the oldest and fattest among us,…”

  12. Matty says:

    That first night when I came across the orchards and gasped out loud…

  13. SirFWALGMan says:

    I loved that line.. but that quest was SOOO annoying. Somehow it bugged out for me 3 times.. first time maybe was my old eyes not seeing the orc heads too well.. but maybe not.. but second time I could not shoot an explosive barrel… finally after 3 times through I finished it.. I am not a huge fan of gimmicky vehicle quests.. but that one was kind of fun… if it had not bugged out.

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