I started out wanting to write a nice little opinion piece on the new PVP zone. Right after launch (well, after the launch DDOS/lag fest/6 hour queues fiasco) and leveling to 100, the zone clearly had some issues – but what new feature doesn’t? So, I waited. Like the first 2 hours of the queue I am currently in to get into the zone I waited patiently for issues to be hammered out, balanced to be restored, etc. But a month after the release of Warlords the zone is more and more abhorrent. It’s past the point where I can feel the issues are bugs and more so that they’re working as intended. It’s not balanced, it’s “required” (I’ll get to that) and it’s just not fun. So, instead of writing a nice opinion piece about a feature I was once so excited about – there’s a rant incoming. (more…)
Uldum – The new desert zone located in the southern coast of Kalimdor. It is designed for players between 83-84 and is probably where you’re going after deepholm. It is probably my 3rd favorite (out of 3 so far) zone from Cataclsym. Before I get into this one, check out my thoughts on Hyjal and Deepholm. There will be a bit of spoilers regarding quests and story of the zone, so continue after the cut to see the rest.
I must say: Hyjal was a blast. Counting all the horrible groups of people killing and collecting everything for the quests, completing the zone took me between 4-5 hours and got me to level 82. I really enjoy how the zone played out, with few exceptions I’ll get back to later. For the most part, the quests lead you in a circular direction around the zone with very few quests sending you very far. The zone makes heavy use of little mini-instances. You take portals to underground areas and complete small quest chains inside, then return to the main zone to continue. Everything looks great, though (unsurprisingly) they reused a lot of old models for the mobs. I only have one major complaint with the flow and feel of the zone as a whole. Occasionally, there was no quests to do. Sometimes it seemed to not give you any directional quests to the next place and you sort of have to fly around for a little while to find a quest giver.
There aren’t really any difficult quests to complete. This could be due to it being the “entry-level” cataclysm zone or because my Paladin was sporting pretty nice ICC25 quality gear. After doing what I believe was all the quests in the zone, I had only two upgrades to my current gear, though some pieces were close. As a result my person damage dropped a little. As you level the ratings required to gain a % of haste/crit/hit/expertise all become much more substantial. With only 2 upgrades, my haste and crit are both 50% or so lower after 2 levels gained and both hit and expertise, which used to be capped, are now well under cap. Fortunately, I feel that Deepholm holds more upgrades. Shortly after leaving Hyjal I did the Stonecore instance and got Sword of the Bottomless Pit, a substantial upgrade over even my Shadow’s Edge. The damage per second of the weapon is 33% higher. I digress, back to Hyjal.
Another thing I noticed, though honestly not until I was writing this, there wasn’t any group quests in Hyjal. On several occasions I ended up grouped with people so we could share the kill of a quest mob, but it was out of convenience of not waiting for 4 other people to kill it first, not from difficulty of the mob. I am hoping for more difficult future zones and quests. Alas, I must wrap this up, my 35 minute wait to log on is about over and I want to get back to questing.
More from the Cataclysm soon, Deepholm next!
Hyjal leveling guide – I admittedly didn’t use this, but I wanted to provide a resource for those looking for one.