Welcome Back! Or How I Rolled Another Alt

It’ll come as no surprise that when Scarymidget said he might, possibly, maybe be interested in returning to the game, I was doing my best to break his arm *ahem* hype up the fun factor. You see, before he was scary.. and a midget, he was my beloved pocket healer and a guy (and gal–his wife is awesome folks) that my husband and I had gone to visit at the end of a couple of weeks in the woods. And yes, we were nice enough to stop at the hotel and shower first!

Of course, it didn’t hurt that this time around I’m not raiding 4-7 days a week. That the hubby is working 2nd shift and I’m now more in line with his West coast time zone shenanigans. And, the lovely icing on the cake: we can level in LFD. Through 5-mans we met, and through 5-mans we’d continue to run. Awesome.

We’ve been duo-ing for a couple of weeks now (although I think my /played is running right around 18 hours) and while he’s a little ahead (damn herbalists!) we’ve been staying pretty much on par. Groups have relatively smooth so far, and while I may grumble from time to time about individuals, I’ve found that being able to grumble as I go really keeps my frustration levels super low and I’m back to being able to run multiple runs in a row without breaking a sweat.

What surprised me, him, us, is what I decided to go with. We knew we were going Worgen since he hadn’t completed their storyline yet. He decided on a mage, and I went with a … warrior. Again. Now, that may sound like I level warriors constantly and have 2-3 at least at max level. Not so. I roll warrior alts constantly and never freakin’ finish them. My currently “searchable” (i.e. played ’em since the expansion) warriors include:

  • 18 Dwarf
  • 13 Undead
  • 13 Orc
  • 27 Tauren
  • 72 Human
I have never had a warrior hit the current level cap. You’d think with the long, dry spell of end-game Wrath I’d have managed to at least finish one, but alas, it was just not to be despite the severe case of week-long carpal tunnel I inflicted on myself spamming Slam.
So, I have a new Worgen Warrior named Myriel. And I’ve discovered (or rediscovered in some cases) some things about myself, PuGs and warriors.

Who the Hell Are You?

I was a tank for quite a long time. I thought I loved to tank. Well, to be fair, I do love to tank. But I hate tanking when I don’t have a friend outlet. It wasn’t until I was out in the world without a friend in the world to tank for that I realized I hate tanking for strangers. When I leveled my first tank and really began raiding with her, it was with friends who had come back to the game. By the time they left, I’d gathered around myself a comfortable group of friends that were always eager to have a dependable tank. However, when I finally left my Horde server, and my friends had scattered to parts unknown, I found I didn’t enjoy tanking as much. I thought maybe I was just burned out, so I tried tanking a few times since then and found it to be the same. If I don’t know/trust who I’m running with (at least one person) then I tend to be extremely nervous, cranky and irritable.

The First Pull Is Always the Worst

It took me a long time to view my rage bar with anything but disgust. I know darn well I abandoned some of those early toons because I was so frustrated over the mechanic. Even Corrinna, my longest lasting warrior in the history of Wind’s warrior projects had problems with it. By and large, rage isn’t so much of a problem at low levels with constant opportunities to pull more mobs. Having grown up on a paladin tank, who at one time relied on healing to regain precious, precious mana, I like to think I’m fairly adept at spotting just the right moment to go charging into the next pack. However, there’s really nothing I’ve got in my toolbox that helps me on that very first pack. I’m going to be on empty. And I’ve yet to find a group that gets it. If you Multishot I’ve got no freakin’ way to pick up those mobs yet! And don’t get me started on the mob roulette wheel.

The Mob Roulette

Ok, I reminded myself. When I play a DPS toon, I /assist the tank. While it’d be nice if every pull was festooned with fabulous raid markers, let’s be honest here: on a 15 minute dungeon, I could add another 5-10 minutes marking stuff, and who wants to wait for that? So, no markers, no assist, and guess what happens. Everyone chooses a different target and goes to town. The DPS I really /love are the ones who pay attention and shift so at least they’re contributing to the same mobs as everyone else, even if they decided to pick their own to start. The ones I hate are the ones who pick a lovely target and stick with it… even when we could really use their interrupt on the caster!

Pacing

My friends have been known to call me merciless. I like to call it making good time. There are quite a few factors that go into a good pace for your group: personal survivability, group DPS, healer throughput and mana and mob abilities. Some things are easy to tank in large groups. Some things suck to tank in large groups. Sometimes your group will do really solid AoE damage, and sometimes they’re not so hot at it. It almost never does any good to pace for the highest common denominator. I have yet to “punish” a group by leaving, but I never, ever run another dungeon with a player who sets my pacing for me, and there’s a couple of reasons for it.

  1. The solo guy. This person generally is bored with the pace because he’s more awesome than the rest of us. If he could LFD with himself he would because we’re just wasting his time. While this player is generally doing awesome DPS, he’s making it impossible for me to control mobs and is generally driving the healer insane. I can’t handle this kind of chaos when I tank, and you can just look for your own group.
  2. Pull MORE! I had this one last night. I understand healing in the lower levels (hell for much of LFD) can be a bit of a bore. However, when I’m stunned/incapacitated and the DPS in general is not using AoE on fairly large mob packs (5-7) it’s not going to speed up the process any for me to pull a bigger group. Why more = better/faster when it many cases it isn’t I’ll just never understand.

Now Spoiled for Life

At very low levels I, uh, tanked in Battle Stance. Who cares about that damage reduction, I have Charge. Then I hit the 20’s and decided I should be ‘sponsible. *pout* I tried doing the stance shuffle but the rage loss was driving me more insane than the retribution paladin beating me to the mobs. So I plugged along until I met Warbringer. Be still my heart. I can charge whenever I want. Stance is irrelevant. Combat status is irrelevant. Catch me if you can, I’m the Worgen of doom baby.

All in all, I’m having a great time playing my baby Warrior, and as I’m rapidly passing the 40 level mark I’m hoping that this time I manage to max out a warrior. However, even if that day never comes, it’s been a ton of fun to make an alt with such a fun purpose: hanging out with a good buddy and watching the levels fly by.

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2 thoughts on “Welcome Back! Or How I Rolled Another Alt

  1. I got in the habit early on of just keybinding skull and X so before I am even in charge range I can throw at least a skull out on one mob and most of the time the dps get the hang of it pretty quick. After that first skull dies i find that it generally (for most pulls and depending on the dps) doesn’t matter much what add they all switch to. If its a group that needs two adds to die first I will mark skull and X.

    In regards to the healer asking you to pull more I always thought it was because they are bored healing when the tank isnt coming dangerously close to dying every mob pull. It’s not about the pace but more about thier “fun,” to which I always respond “I will pull at as fast a pace that I can ensure we get through this dungeon safely, if that bores you feel free to try healing in bgs or raids”

    • I actually use Opie for raid markers–one button, and a choice of 8? markers is win. If/when I ever get to the point that someone can actually kill themselves I might actually do it, but it’s generally not even enough of a problem that I can’t taunt the sucker right back… it’s just annoying! 🙂

      That particular healer was particularly horrible. Half the party spent over half of the dungeon with gaping wounds. I understand prioritizing your healing, but if you’re bored, you can patch up the entire group.

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