Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Absolute Beginners

8 Years playing, and still I have some absolute noob moments. In my attempt to level my Panda Monk, I have had a relatively seamless transition between the old expansions. That was until I pitched up at Hyjal.

On arriving at Hyjal the first quests send you off to kill Elementals, find some berries and kill 4 hidden orcish dudes. Having smashed all in my wake, I karate kicked my way to the elementals. Wow do they hit like a train and how many Hit Points?

The problem was of course one of stat inflation, which after an expansion of rampant gear inflation in WotLK it is not a surprise. Having only quested through Sholazar Basin, my gear was in the region of iLevel 162. If you look at the weapon below this is something like the one I was using.

When cataclysm launched 2 and bit years ago, everybody would have been sporting at least iLevel 200 Epic weapons. Typically something like the transmog favourite the Staff of Trickery from the Heroic Violet Hold.
Alternatively from the Forge of Souls, it was possible to obtain the Tower of the Mouldering Corpse (lovely name). This was from the first of the three Heroics which dropped with Icecrown Patch and was very doable even with LFD.
These items do not compare in any way, shape or form. Even if you ignore the large increase in base stats like agility and stamina, the biggest leap is in the damage per second, with a doubling of the base DPS. Even as a linear increase this should result in the Elementals dying twice as fast. Sadly I did not work this out until I received the following as a quest reward.
More than double the DPS and I was swapping from a 2 Hander to a 1 Hander. The worst part of all this, is that at level 80 there is a quest to continue your training to be a Monk. The quest reward is the Bladed Staff of the Echoing Gong.
After that there is no problem in Hyjal, and everyone will run away in terror as soon as you approach.
Tip for non-noob moment, complete your training ASAP, it's worth it.


  1. That was a huge problem at the beginning of cata. It seemed it was designed for people that were in LK normal gear at the minimum. They seemed to forget new player would come in there with 138 and 154 gear and get crushed those first few quests.

    I am glad that the cata to mists transition is 10 times better. Someone pointed out their stupidity of the previous expansion.

  2. TBC was 58
    WotLK was 68
    Cataclysm 80
    Even going into those expansions 2 levels earlier than originally designed for was not a problem. Cataclysm is tough and then all of a sudden it is not. I am becoming a real hater of stat degradation and gear inflation.

    We have both discussed how the dailies change from challenge to a stroll in the park with a couple pieces of gear.

    The real downside to this is that of all the gear to make a difference to your performance, the biggest single item is a weapon, and they seem to require a selling of your soul to get one.

    I am glad to see you could at least put a positive spin on the expansion, because after the levelling experience I am feeling very similiar to Cataclysm.

    Makes me wonder why I am still playing sometimes.

  3. Cataclysm is tough at first, then gets really easy, then gets harder again. MOP is a little better at the beginning, since the first quest is a gimme and awards a weapon, but then gets even more brutal at the end. Level 89 is just terrible, you're so much weaker after 4 "level ups" and putzing around Dread Wastes fighting level 90 mobs with 400k health.

    I think 5 levels is the problem. The reasoning for that was the old talent system, and they were running out of ideas for new filler talents. The new system doesn't have that issue, so maybe the next expansion can go to 105 or something.

    1. I agree with what you say Matt. I had never noticed the weapon being the first reward for riding in the ROFLcopter because all my characters had better. It was however a welcome relief to my Monk, to get a big DPS boost.

      I levelled a DK and Warrior to 90, and they were awesome between 85-87. Levels 88 and 89 are much harder with drop in key stats before you hit 90 and start with the gear inflation treadmill.

      I think 5 levels for an expansion is about right. It gives a suitable reboot to the gear levels before they go soaring off again.