My Own 90 Boost Adventures & Ruminations

Here’s where I confess that:

a) I actually resubbed for 30 days shortly after pre-ordering the expansion last Monday (and by “shortly”, I mean “within four hours”)
and
b) I boosted a warlock from 1-90

I know, I know. The poll results said I should boost a brand-new monk. I couldn’t do it. I just couldn’t. I have absolutely no desire to play a monk outside of a tiny bit of curiosity when it comes to mistweavers. I did not want to play a monk.

Similarly, I kind of thought it, well, silly, to play a warlock. I already have a ranged DPS class with a pet — my hunter. So why the warlock?

Well, the first reason is because I’ve always been interested in warlocks in terms of a playstyle. DoT management has always intrigued me in theory. The second reason is that I’ve tried, on more than one occasion, to level a warlock. It never goes well (even with heirlooms — and I even have the heirloom RING!) and I have no interest in levelling a character from 1-90 or even 1-60 and then boosting from 60.

The third reason is that hey, I don’t much like the other options I felt I realistically had and so went with the warlock. It was the second choice in my poll, so why the heck not?

I’ll say this up front, I’m a bad warlock. I’ve spent about an hour at the training dummies and I am just not doing a great job. Part of this is UI-related (I need a good dot timer that ISN’T DoTimer because DoTimer keeps crashing my WoW, oddly) and part of it is that I’m sure I’m just not comprehending the subtleties of the class yet. Happily for the rest of the population, I have not grouped up for anything at this juncture, because I clearly don’t know what in the hell I’m doing and do not wish to inflict my idiocy on other people. You’re welcome! :)

That said, part of the reason for even using the boost was to help my professions along in the sense that I have:

– skinning/leatherworking on Kurn
– alchemy (elixir)/jewelcrafting on Madrana
– herbalism/mining on my shaman
– alchemy (potion)/enchanting on my priest
– alchemy (transmute)/inscription on my warrior

Those are all maxed. This means that, on Eldre’Thalas, I am missing just blacksmithing, engineering and tailoring as primary professions. I might bring my mage back from Skywall (at some point) and drop his herbalism for tailoring… but the point is, I wanted my boosted character to have blacksmithing and engineering.

Now, I could have, perhaps I should have, rolled a death knight on Eldre’Thalas, levelled five levels to 60 and then boosted that to 90, with 600 BS/600 Engineering. But I thought about it and realized that I really have zero desire to play a death knight. I don’t enjoy tanking and I enjoy melee DPS even less than I enjoy tanking.

So I boosted the warlock to 90 (male dwarf, FYI) and have the plan to make him a blacksmith and an engineer.

Problem: OH MY GOD, THE MATS.

It was brought to my attention that, previously in the expansion, Blacksmithing was changed and one is now able to use just Ghost Iron Ore to level to 600.

Ultimately, though it was good to know, it was kind of useless because Engineering requires many of the same materials as Blacksmithing. Additionally, the total number of pieces of Ghost Iron Ore required is over ten thousand. Even though it’s abundant and I could buy a bunch I’m sure, if I had to go mining in the old worlds for things like Thorium and Cobalt for Engineering, then I decided to do it “old school” for Blacksmithing, too, by just going around and mining for both professions while I was going to be out there anyway.

Total pieces of various types of ore/stone needed for BOTH Blacksmithing AND Engineering the old-school way: 5593.

Total pieces of various types of ore/stone needed for BOTH Blacksmithing AND Engineering with the “new” BS Ghost Iron Ore method: ~12000.

… yeah, OLD SCHOOL IT IS.

So, I made a spreadsheet because things just got complicated. Of course, it doesn’t include things like “Alicite” or “Wool Cloth” type materials. I have most of that stuff just lying around in my many bank tabs of my bank guild. I just tracked the stones and ores. Of course, in order to count up all the ores I needed, I had to look up the mats at various guides and then MULTIPLIED the number of bars they were asking for by two, in many cases, in order to come up with how much ore I needed. That’s not the case with things like Thorium, but is the case with something like Adamantite. So I broke down the number of pieces of all the types of ore needed for Blacksmithing and then did the same for Engineering. Then I hauled out Altoholic and searched through all my toons (on that realm, excluding the Apotheosis guild bank) and put in a column stating how many of these things I already had. Turns out I had a lot of Rough Stone, Coarse Stone and even Dense Stone. I also had a lot of Iron Ore. Then I put in the “Total I Need” column at the end, showing me how many I needed to have IN MY BAGS after mining to ensure I’d have just about enough. In the case of Copper Ore, I had to mine 369 pieces. In the case of Thorium, 609 pieces.

So I designated Saturday, March 15th, as #MININGDAY2014. Here’s some of what I did.

bsengineering3

So. Much. Thorium.

bsengineering4

On to Fel Iron.

bsengineering5

Adamantite took a long time, but was marginally less awful than Fel Iron.

The worst, to date. Cobalt was painful.

The worst, to date. Cobalt was painful.

So I did everything through Fel Iron Ore on Saturday, did Adamantite and Cobalt on Sunday and plan to tackle the rest later this week, as time allows. I’ll also be spending some time on Timeless Isle, practicing being a warlock, once I get around to doing a bit more reading.

As an aside, I’m finding something really interesting is happening since I’ve been back: many people are acting as though I don’t know what in the hell I’m doing.

Guys, I may have taken a break for over a year (17 months minus a week in there around Christmas, actually) but it’s not like I don’t know how to play the game. Sure, I didn’t know about the Ghost Iron Ore method for Blacksmithing, but even still, I discounted that method once I had learned about it, because 10,000+ pieces of Ghost Iron Ore versus fewer than 6000 pieces of stuff just doesn’t make sense to me, especially because I had to mine some of the old stuff for Engineering anyhow.

And yet, 90% of the comments I’ve received about this have been challenging my logic for choosing to mine old-school materials.

I know people are mostly trying to help and some are confused by my choices, but for crying out loud, I didn’t play for 17 months. It’s not like I forgot everything I ever knew about the game. ;) It’s changed, but it hasn’t changed that much. And it’s not as though I don’t keep up on the vast majority of changes. Or as if I don’t do my own research on things. While it’s really interesting to be on the side of things where I have to look stuff up and I have to confirm various things, it’s less interesting to be repeatedly challenged by people who think they know better.

To be honest, it’s making me think a lot about how I’ve acted in the past, when I’ve been on top of my game and have known things with absolute conviction. While I maintain that any advice I’ve given out in the past about this game has, at the time, been accurate, I can’t help but wonder if newer people (or at least less-knowledgeable people) were frustrated with the advice I’d offered to them. I know that I’m right about certain things (old-school mats vs. Ghost Iron Ore in this particular situation, FOR ME, for instance), but part of what fatigued me over the course of my WoW career was the constant questioning of my decisions. Have I, at some point in the past, caused fatigue or frustration to someone else when I’ve genuinely been trying to help? I’m not talking about feedback to people in my raid groups or guilds, but random holy paladins who were, as I saw it, Doing Things Wrong in random dungeons in the past. Or hunters. I mean, okay, the melee hunters in this Wailing Caverns run I once was snarky to, I’m not apologetic about. At all. :P I mean people to whom I offered unsolicited advice.

I’m trying to figure out which scenario I’m running up against here…

1) People are offering me advice and are trying to be helpful, despite the fact that it is actually not going to help me in the least.
2) People are offering me advice and are trying to be helpful because they think they know better than I do.

While I’d really like to believe the majority of people offering advice fall into group 1, I can’t help but think there are at least a few in group 2 and possibly some people who are both.

Again, this is causing me to be introspective. Every time I’ve offered advice to someone, I have tried to be helpful and have tried to make sure that the advice WOULD be helpful. But I know that many times, I’ve seen the problem as a very basic “oh, they don’t know about X, Y or Z, LET ME INFORM THEM” problem, thus falling into category 2. Have I been wrong in the past? Is it a lot more nuanced than I’ve seen it? Should I have been less willing to offer advice until I was certain someone needed it? I don’t know. I can’t help but think that if I didn’t offer advice, then maybe no one else would have. I can’t help but think that if people keep their mouths shut and adopt an attitude of “not my problem”, the community suffers. And what if people who are obviously struggling don’t ask for advice? What if people just sit there quietly, unsure of what they’re doing, but remain silent rather than open their mouths and be thought a fool?

Even after an extended break, I didn’t think I’d ever be on the “oh, no, Kurn, do it THIS WAY” side of things again. But apparently, I am. It’s a weird thing to go from being someone who knows damn near everything there is to know about the game to, well, not knowing, for example, that Blacksmithing is available to level from 1-600 with just Ghost Iron Ore. The last time I was this out of touch with the game itself was before I hit 60 on my first toon. And I don’t know if I like it. No, okay, I don’t like it. And I definitely don’t like being challenged by others on my various decisions, but I’ve done that to others in the past. I’m not even sure that the random, unsolicited advice I’ve given in the past is altogether justifiable, although I would think that telling a death knight “tank” to use Blood Presence is, you know, something they should do regardless of how tactfully that may or may not be put…

I guess I’m just trying to work out how I feel about people’s recent behaviour towards me and how my reaction to that may mirror how other people may have felt when I gave those others unsolicited advice. I mean, I’m thankful that people want to help me out. I appreciate the sentiment. And I like talking to people about the game. But maybe doing it in a way that is less challenging and more helpful (but not condescending!) is a better way to get one’s point across. Yeah, I’m wondering how I could do that, myself. Certainly, it’s a fine line to tread, but I know that I’d be more receptive to advice given in such a manner and I imagine others would be, too.

Today, March 17th, 2014, is the last day that you’ll be able to buy Kurn’s Guide to Being a Kick-Ass Raider at its introductory price, by the way! The launch sale ends tomorrow, so don’t hesitate to check it out!

12 comments

  1. Rades says:

    I think a lot of people also forget you may not have the resources available to them, after a year+ of MoP, such as multiple farms where you can get many stacks of ore “free” each day, or stockpiles of Spirits of Harmony to trade in for Ghost Iron. For these players, it probably does make a lot more sense to use Ghost Iron – not as a matter of personal preference, but because they literally have it growing on trees. (Okay, in the dirt, but you get my drift.)

    Personally, if I were in your shoes I’d probably end up doing the same as you. Because it’s numerically/mathematically logical, but also because I fly around and spend enough time in Pandaria already – I’d rather mix it up and get some visual variety by touring around old-world zones than spend endless hours flying around the Valley of Four Winds.

  2. Kurn says:

    Rades – But how does it make sense to use Ghost Iron when I ALSO have Engineering? You can’t grow Thorium, can’t trade in SoH for Cobalt… My logic is: I’m going to be in, say, Winterspring, mining Thorium ANYWAY, may as well just mine up as much as I’m going to need. And, similarly, it’s mostly nice to get a different view of things. I quite enjoyed Winterspring. Less enjoyable was Cobalt farming. But I’m sincerely looking forward to Saronite! :D

    As to the farm, I’m actually bewildered by anyone who’s managed to keep more than one farm going daily for more than a year. I hate my farm with a passion. And yet, there I am every day on Kurn, tending to the damn thing. Can’t imagine doing it for my other 90(s)! My hat’s off to anyone who can do it. :)

  3. Rades says:

    Yeah, very true – Engineering’s going to throw you back to Azeroth anyway, so may as well get it all done there. :)

    That being said, maybe a combination would be most effective? Power through frustrating BS stretches with Ghost Iron? I haven’t leveled BS in ages but I shudder remembering some of those painful skill-up gaps.

    I’ve stopped doing the farm, but I imagine it’s a nice source of income for lots of people! 5 minutes of work and you have a nice crop of ore or Golden Lotuses to throw up on the AH, or enough herbs to pay for your flasks for raid, etc. I usually can’t be bothered anymore though.

  4. Kurn says:

    Rades – That’s my thinking. Why people think otherwise is a good plan eludes me…

    That said, I’m sure there are some awful skill-up gaps and, for that, I’ll be happy to use Ghost Iron if needed, rather than go back and dig up another 100 Cobalt Ore or spent 1250g on 5 stacks of Cobalt Ore at the AH.

    What I hate about the farm is the guilt I feel if I don’t tend to it. I feel like “Oh, MAN, there’s a missed opportunity to have 16 of whatever…” It’s like the daily cooldowns for LWs or tailors or whatever, which I also dislike. If I miss that cooldown, I’ve just screwed myself over. That said, I haven’t done a single LW cooldown since I’ve been back — because I forgot about it. And now I’m going to feel compelled to get back to it. THANKS, RADES. ;)

  5. Rades says:

    Well you know, I hear you can grow leather on the farms…. ;)

  6. Sol says:

    Blacksmithing was the last profession I needed and I leveled it mostly through the old world. One look at the mats for Ghost Iron levelling and I knew it was going to be easier to just do the old stuff. I did use Ghost Iron (and Darkmoon Faire) to get over some humps. Cobalt was indeed a pain. I was combining it with my search for the Unborn Val’kyr pet to try and make the time spent more efficient, but I am pretty sure that was where I used a DMF quest and some Ghost Iron to save some time.

  7. Beezlebubba says:

    Google knows that I’ve been here. And my phone tells me when you have a new blog post. And I never asked for it to do that. On a positive note, I know when you have a new blog post. On a less positive note…how creepy.

  8. Saga says:

    I just wanted to say that there are a lot of dot timers out there, and you’ll have lots of people saying which one they prefer.

    For me, I use ClassTimer because it works for all my alts as well. (And I’m nothing if not lazy). I also use EventAlert for keeping track of various procs and similar things. (Mainly because TellMeWhen is something I never quite could figure out!)

  9. R says:

    I usually only try to DROP KNOWLEDGE on someone when a question is asked, like yours in terms of which class we’d recommend you boost. And if anything, apparently I didn’t pitch monks well enough which is just something I’m going to have to live with. Sigh. Good luck with your Warlock, though, I guess. :)

    Otherwise, I try (and maybe fail) to just keep things conversational, as discussions… it’ll include my opinions, sure, and I may offer them pretty conclusively, but it’s with the intention of provoking thought, not necessarily agreement. It’s always hard to predict how others will take it, though, and everyone will take things a bit (or a lot) differently.

    As for leveling professions, far as I’m concerned you did it right… the old world stuff is relatively available, generally relatively inexpensive (although if you’re actually farming that isn’t of much value) and, maybe most importantly, gets you out in the world for a bit. Obviously after a long break you haven’t seen as much of Pandaria as some of us but if I had the choice I’d definitely go old world. Plus, you can DE most of the stuff you’ll make while leveling Blacksmithing to get some of your gold back… I don’t think the Ghost Iron leveling items can be DEed.

    And yeah, Cobalt SUCKS… that’s one of the reasons it’s so expensive on most servers, you could probably sell the Cobalt and buy out the next 3 mats combined if you can level that phase with Ghost Iron instead. That was by far my slowest leveling period when I did both BS and Eng a while back myself, I had trouble getting enough and I wasn’t going to buy off the AH for 400g/stack…

  10. Kurn says:

    Rades – TOUCHÉ.

    Sol – I haven’t started in on the levelling of the professions as of yet (I took a bit of a break from farming this week!), but since I have nearly two weeks until the next DMF, I might be stuck with Ghost Iron for any humps I hit. At least there’s an alternative to some tricky bits where RNG might not be on my side in getting a certain number of skill-ups from a yellow pattern!

    Beez – That’s pretty hilarious! How’s it going with you? Still a suicidal warrior tank? ;)

    Saga – Awesome, thank you for the recommendations! I’ll have to see which (if any) I like when I play around with the warlock some more. :)

    R – Hah, you did not pitch monks well enough, but, to be fair, I’ve disliked the mere idea of monks since I realized we were going to have PANDAS in the damn game. It’s not your fault. ;)

    Unsolicited advice is a tough thing to deal with. I mean, I KNEW, for example, that the cloak from JP (or VP?) at the end of Wrath of the Lich King was TERRIBLE for holy paladins. Like, awful. But so many pallies would pick it up. So whenever I saw one with it, I’d say “you know, there’s a better alternative for your cloak, try (this one) or (that one)” or something. Sometimes I got thanks, sometimes I got silence, but either way, at least they would then KNOW there were alternatives. I really just have this crazy desire to help raise the overall knowledge of the game in the player base, but I’m unsure how that can really happen without offering advice here and there.

    As to the professions, while I farmed the hell out of all that Cobalt, I caved and bought some Obsidium. I couldn’t do any more of that. Then I finished up Elementium and that brings me to… Ghost Iron Ore. Which I haven’t bothered to do yet. But I will. :) My goal is to just farm EVERYTHING and then do a marathon, haha.

  11. Sane says:

    Hey Madrana,
    I use AffDots for dot tracking. Like it a lot.

  12. Kurn says:

    Sane – Hey, dude! How’s it going? :) Thanks so much for the recommendation, I’ll definitely check it out. :)

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