Monday, February 16, 2009

WoW: Day 1

So, I FINALLY managed to get a fully patched client and started playing the game today.

When the donator and I talked about this idea, we decided it would be best if I try to get a nice rounded view of the beginning levels of the game.

I'd try some PvE, some PvP, and yes... even some RP.

When he originally suggested this concept, I remember I was not that amused.

Certain comments about a ball peen hammer and his extremities come to mind.

But, in order to be as fair as possible, I'm going to try and get as broad a view of this game as I can using the trial version.

Do you see what I go through for you people?

Today, in order to get a handle on game mechanics, I decided to start out on a PvE server. I made a Tauren Shaman and logged in.

Side note: Do you remember the cartoony graphics from Wind Waker?

Yeah, apparently all of those guys work at Blizzard now.

All of them.

For a while there I thought I was playing Crash Bandicoot.

Still, the graphics weren't terrible. It did affect the immersion a little bit for me, but I suppose if you were coming into WoW with little or no experience in other games, it would be quite impressive.

I know. You thought I was just going to shit all over the graphics, didn't you?

So did I.

Unfortunately, the graphics aren't bad enough to remark on.

They're just there. They're not the best I've ever seen *coughFFXIcough*, but it's not like this is a Commodore 64 game.

I give them a solid "meh".

What is bad enough to comment on is the music.

Or lack thereof.

Man, if any FFXI players try playing WoW, you should get yourself a good MP3 player because that place is motherf&%@in' quiet.

In FFXI, there's always music playing. Always.

You're walking, there's music.

Riding a chocobo... music.

Killing a bunny rabbit... music.

In WoW, there's just a whole lot of quiet.

They DO have voice acting in parts. I'll give them credit for that.

It's terrible voice acting, but still...

Anyway, once the initial culture shock wore off, I tried to get the hang of the controls.

Funny story... Did you know that the control layout for WoW is nothing like the control layout for FFXI?

That took some getting used to. My hands are just accustomed to that specific organization. Apparently, if you use the same keys over and over for upwards of 10 hours a day, your muscles have a hard time adjusting.

And why is there a jump button?

Seriously, I was looking pretty hard and I didn't find a single use for jumping.

Not one.

But they put it there, so damn straight I was using it.

I wonder if me skipping through the fields like a four year old girl took any of the drama out of the situation.

That's how I spent most of the day, just hopping through a meadow and killing wolves and cougars and whatnot.

Speaking of which... Can any of the WoW players explain the drop mechanics to me?

I thought it was bad in FFXI when worms and rabbits dropped crystals and stuff, but this game...

Every animal drops completely random shit.

Kill a wolf... And you find a rabbit's foot.

A rabbit's foot.

On a wolf.

Hey, maybe he ate a rabbit, right? Maybe that's it. That makes senses, right?

Then there's the strider (read: two-legged bird looking thing) that drops pants.

And gloves.

And pouchs.

Not just leather mind you.

Oh, no. These birds were dropping chainmail armor every other minute. I've got an inventory full of Mail armor I can't even wear.

The rest of my inventory is full of rabbit's feet.

I must be the luckiest bastard to ever step foot in Azeroth.

The rest of my day was spent going to get shit for EVERYBODY. No matter who you talk to, they are going to hand you a shopping list of animal body parts they want you to collect.

Want to get a new pair of pants? Go get the guy 8 bird feathers.

Because I said so. That's why.

It's not that the quests were painful. It's more that they were just plain annoying.

I don't go to the supermarket for Susan either.

You know... Maybe I'm just being hard on the game. Maybe this is just not the best job to choose from the beginning.

I'll pick better tomorrow.

Tomorrow: I roll up a Paladin!

45 Comments:

At 9:14 PM, Blogger tyranastrasz said...

Speaking as a four-year Paladin player, let me just say right now: Do not make a paladin unless you're very fond of Autoattack, because between levels 1 and 50 or so you're not going to have anything but that and maybe one direct damage spell. Everything else is passive damage buffs.

 
At 9:39 PM, Blogger MattAllan3184 said...

Hahahaha I've been a paladin since the game started as well, and i completely agree with the previous comment. Don't do it!! I just remember saying the same stuff you're saying when I first started .... 4 years later and I'm raiding Naxxramas every other week =(.

 
At 9:48 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

Getting a nice rounded view of the beginning levels might not be the best idea... That's like playing FFXI and leveling PLD WAR WHM and BLM all to lvl 10 and saying you've experienced all that FFXI has to offer.

If you only play to lvl 10 you'll never experience that asshat who steals the NM you've been camping for 17 hours.

I know that you have to have some friends (read: people scared of you) that play WoW and will let you "use" their account.

 
At 10:00 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

Ok, so you've had a character for maybe 24 hours now... so you should be getting pretty close to level 60 by now. Maybe 55 if you took a nap this afternoon. Once you're done with that sometime early tomorrow, it'll be time for you to start over on a freshly rolled character and do the exact same annoying quests all over again! Yay!

 
At 11:03 PM, Blogger breakingthedawn said...

The gathering quests suck in the starting areas. And I'm with you that the Taurens kinda look like the graphics from Wind Waker, but all the other races look really good imo.

If you get out of the starting areas the game gets alot better. I HATED the starting area for the humans, but once i made it out of the first area it got alot better

 
At 11:26 PM, Blogger Joshua said...

Good luck rolling a paladin. My main is a paladin and it is extremely boring to level through. using the trial version you won't even get to the better parts of being a paladin. Only reason i made it through the lower levels is my girlfriend plays a mage and we leveled together.

 
At 11:31 PM, Blogger Mystic said...

Dave, I don't commment here much... at all... ever, but I'm an avid reader. And an evil WoW player. I have only this to say:

DO NOT roll up a pally as your second character. They're lovely... now... but they take some getting used to. I would suggest a mage. Or a warlock. They get minions. You like minions, right?

 
At 12:20 AM, Blogger Gero said...

yes roll a warlock i can't imagine dave not liking having minions to do his bidding.

paladins are extremely boring to level... not to mention that without tBC you'll be stuck playing alliance *shudder*

 
At 3:05 AM, Blogger Kimberly said...

While there may not be different music for all the actions you perform, if you go into the 'Sound & Voice' menu there is an option to loop the background music. Though I admit, I usually play with some sort of background noise.

As a word of caution when you attempt a RP/RP-PvP server. For the love of god, stay out of Goldshire (human start town). At least for your own sanity. But, if you want a good blog post, have at.

 
At 3:18 AM, Blogger Ariel said...

You think starter drops are bad? Try getting a quest that requires you to collect Mountain Lion blood around level 20 in Hillsbrad. Sounds easy, right? I mean, everything bleeds.

Not these lions.

There are also many hoofless, headless, eyeless and earless creatures running about. Not to mention the myriad of other bodyparts they've been stripped of.

No one ever considers the repercussions of questing.

 
At 4:00 AM, Blogger TJ said...

Yeah, as someone else said, you should try looping the background music.

It's unfortunate you tried the most boring starter race though (Tauren, Mulgore is just a terrible zone). I'm going to agree with the above commenters though. Don't roll a paladin! This is how fights go: Engage mob, press special attack once, wait, loot mob.

Although, I do think it would make a good blog entry if you rolled a Paladin, if you're trying to get an actual view of what the game is like (which I assume you're not) then don't roll one.

 
At 5:31 AM, Blogger RamblingDreamer said...

Ditto comment about background music and how to turn it on. Though I turned mine off pretty early on - that crap gets repetitive, and was slowly driving me to insanity. Plus I spend a good deal of time with the sound down anyhow, so it doesn't conflict with the TV or my daughter talking to me (she just started doing that a lot) or whatever else might be going on.

Hooray for going Horde! But yeah - Mulgore is a boring place. I love Tauren, but they have a pretty blah starting area. I would suggest maybe orc or troll for your next go.

As for class - warlock or mage. Warlock for the minions, mage for the polymorph (turning baddies into sheep cracks me the hell up).

I can't comment on the RP in WoW because I've never done it. I love me some RP, but I can't imagine some of those people doing it. They can barely string a sentence together, let alone provide any meaningful dialog.

 
At 6:05 AM, Blogger Akamar said...

I distinctly remember music... Though, I did turn the looping of the area track off...

And yes... investing in your own grinding music is a good idea...

As far as I can tell, as long as someone has to run somewhere, they're jumping to do it... and even when they get a mount, they're making IT jump everywhere too...

And drops... mmmnnng..

All in all, it'll be interesting to see you carry on in this little experiment...

 
At 6:25 AM, Blogger Dymlos said...

Forget playing as a PLD! Go play as a Hunter! They make one of the best solo jobs in the game.

 
At 6:51 AM, Blogger Eric said...

If I didn't know it would be a complete waste of my time and money I'd purchase a new account, level up a character from 1-60 of any class you choose and let you have at it. 1-60 is retarded and annoying, hands down.

60+ is where the game takes a turn, vastly for good. The zones are 100 times better than in azeroth. New and exciting questlines, flying mounts and everything

70-80 is exceptional. The quests are brilliantly done. So many times you get to take control of a vehicle or something else adding new aspects to the game.

Sigh. Honestly, I think you'd find WoW much more fun and might even make you a converter :P

 
At 7:09 AM, Blogger Vibrato said...

Leveling a pally is like pounding nails into sensitive parts of your anatomy until about level 60...
I agree about the controls and music. Coming from a click to move game that uses the F keys for the skills(Lineage2) it took me awhile to get used to the controls, except jumping(even now wherever I'm going i'm hoping and skipping my way there). Also one thing L2 had going for it was the amazing soundtrack. While WoW does have some nice music it is pretty quiet most of the time. However some of the new scores for the Northend zones are amazing. Try to get to Grizzly Hills and Storm Peaks if you can ;)Though that's going to be impossible on a trial account...

 
At 7:24 AM, Blogger Just me said...

Am I the only person that actually enjoyed levelling a Paladin 1-50ish? I stopped playing at that point due to lack of funds to pay for my account, but I loved playing Paladin. I even played Alliance (Draenei).

 
At 8:05 AM, Blogger Grenade71822 said...

I leveled my pali prot after 35 and fell in love. Go level a rogue!

 
At 8:10 AM, Blogger jasonx254 said...

Indeed, I agree with the levelling of a rogue , extremely easy and at low levels, dominates in pvp (like 1-20 maybe, i stopped pvping till 70 after that coz i got the raiding need^_^).

Bt yeah...starter areas = kinda boring. Would be much more enjoyment if you could experience outland or northrend.

 
At 8:26 AM, Blogger Ata said...

As other's mentioned, the beginning levels are rough for the non-Blood Elf/Drenei areas (required The Burning Crusades -- the first expansion).

Of the old starting areas, the Tauren (cow people) have got to have the worst starting areas. You will be hurting on bag space. There isn't much you can do. Just sell anything that has a grey name to a npc.

As to the loot system -- it is called 'world drops' where monsters in some areas have the potential to drop just about anything from a shared treasure pool. So that lvl 5 in Mulgore or the lvl 60 in WLP can both drop a decent Bind on Equip (BoE) green, blue, or purple. BoE are items that become 'r/ex' once you equip them. Bind on Pickup (BoP) are like 'r/ex' items in that as soon as it hits your inventory, it is bound to you.

Speaking of odd drops, why does a rabbit drop a spice (rarab tail) and why do tigers drop crab meat? Most drops in WoW make sense. Then there are the grey items (which are dropped with the intention of being npc'd) and other world drops.

You probably shouldn't bother much with a PvP server. The World PvP doesn't start until you hit lvl 20, which is where a trial account maxes out. WoW isn't a bad game, if you can get past the graphics. It is fun, and not nearly as much of a grind as FFXI.

 
At 8:48 AM, Blogger Ellothar121 said...

[GM]Dave, please tell me you were kidding about paying for the trial discs... You can TOTALLY download that shit for free.

http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/trial/

 
At 9:18 AM, Blogger Eric said...

you NEED to get wotlk for one purpose alone.

So that a WoW GM can feed you to the new Jormy

 
At 10:11 AM, Blogger MinorAgentofChaos said...

Dave --

There is LOTS of music in WoW. Press ESC to bring up the game settings, then Sound/Audio. Make sure the Music box is checked and the volume on the music turned up. Also have the Loop Music thing checked, if you really want music running 24/7.

If you go into Video, you can control the quality of your graphics. I think WoW has them set low by default, so as not to overwhelm a new player's video card right from the start.

Oh, and the Jump button is because there are things you'll have to jump over/across in the dungeons/instances. :)

Ellothar -- considering how much Dave hated downloading the patches, you really want to subject him to downloading the whole GAME???

I must be the only paladin in the game that loved leveling it -- and leveling it as protection (er, tank specialization, for those not in the game). Of course, it helps that I have a healer-priest husband to run with; it's a game with us to see how many monsters we can pull without dying.

 
At 10:29 AM, Blogger Yotevol said...

I just got back to work from the weekend to read [GM] Dave's posts.

Then, I reread them.

I'm still in shock.

Really? I mean, why do this to [GM] Dave?

Sure, his troubles in Real Life are amusing. The god-like power he weilds, like a kid running with scissors, is awesome to watch too.

But... why WoW?

[GM] Dave, I don't blame you.

But, I just died a little inside.
And, I threw up a little... in my mouth.

Brb...

 
At 10:46 AM, Blogger Donny Walnuts said...

Man... the next few days of WoW posts are going to be lame. Anyone who has played WoW for any extended period of time knows that the game starts at level 80. 10, 25 man Raids, high end PvP is where it's at.

Up to that point it's just preparation, learning your skills and creating the best build for your character. It's just a grind to get you to level 80. You don't even get your first totems as a shaman until you're like level 20. Totems are like the foundation of shaman play and [GM]Dave is going to make an accurate assessment on the game from a trial aspect? Maybe I'm biased having a level 80 resto shaman as my main toon.

You want to hear a real gripe about WoW? aside from chain mail dropping off a lion (???). They don't scale instances. Black temple -- status symbol if you were level 70 in Burning crusade. Now you walk in with 10 or so skilled level 80's and own the place. Rather than expanding on the content they have and adding more, they just create new things and leave old content to collect dust. It's wasted content for anyone who is starting the game at level 1 for the first time.

 
At 11:31 AM, Blogger Jakk Frost said...

Hmm, that's funny, you must be doing something wrong, I usually get my first totems around level 4 or 5.

As for controls, honestly, I didn't have to retrain my fingers at all, but then I remapped my PC FFXI to a playstation type controller, all I need the keyboard for is chatting or for quickly tabbing around npc's to find that coffer.

Overall, I much prefer FF, but sometimes I take a break from it to play WoW with friends and when I need a little less focused playing. The one area where WoW beats FF is casual play, the ability to log in for only 20 minutes and still get something accomplished. (At least while grinding, not in raiding.)

And it's true, while I like Taurens as a race, they did get the most boring starting area. (even more boring than Sarutabaruta). Horde side, I think Blood Elf's got perhaps the most interesting.

 
At 11:45 AM, Blogger Donny Walnuts said...

maybe I'm wrong... i've been a level 80 shaman since the beginning of the classic version... maybe they changed something in a patch or I just forgot over time. But the rest still holds true.

 
At 11:55 AM, Blogger Gambler_Justice said...

I just know I'm going to enjoy these posts about WoW!
Keep up the good work.

 
At 12:28 PM, Blogger Ellothar121 said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At 12:35 PM, Blogger Durrel said...

The starter areas are pretty bad for all of the original races. The areas for the Draenai and Blood Elves are done better and have an overall theme to them. I absolutely refuse to level alts through the standard starting zones and always run them to the two new races starting areas (this can take a while). It's a shame you couldn't borrow a friends account and play through the Death Knight starting area.

Oh and if you didn't like the look of the Tauren...why did you pick one of them?

Music if you go in to the options you can get the music to continue to play (it stops shortly after entering a new area by default), though you don't get different music for different actions.

You were going to have a hard time giving this a fair shake as it was. You combine that with playing the "vanilla" WoW as well as the limitations on a trial account and this whole process is DOA.

On a side note i've never tried FFXI as I've never found an active trial so i'm sure i'd react quite the same way you are to WoW.

 
At 12:45 PM, Blogger Music-chan said...

I honestly don't expect GM Dave to suddenly fall in love with the game. When you've become attached to a game, you generally look down on other games, whether it's partially habbit or just an honest difference in tastes.

 
At 12:56 PM, Blogger Sarah said...

Eh.. Maybe I'm just biased, but I found the graphics for WoW among the most terrible of the popular MMOs to come out in the last five years. Runescape, Dark Age of Camelot, and Everquest 1 get the award for the absolute worst. But I've played Guild Wars, which is no-fee monthly and it has amazing graphics. I also play a lot of Everquest2, and let me tell you, EQ2 has some damn sexy graphics (and it came out within months of WoW). Just saying, in most shots you can see the pixels.. I thought the 8-bit era was over?

 
At 12:56 PM, Blogger Sarah said...

Eh.. Maybe I'm just biased, but I found the graphics for WoW among the most terrible of the popular MMOs to come out in the last five years. Runescape, Dark Age of Camelot, and Everquest 1 get the award for the absolute worst. But I've played Guild Wars, which is no-fee monthly and it has amazing graphics. I also play a lot of Everquest2, and let me tell you, EQ2 has some damn sexy graphics (and it came out within months of WoW). Just saying, in most shots you can see the pixels.. I thought the 8-bit era was over?

 
At 1:19 PM, Blogger jason said...

Well not really importand, if you want to kill yourself youcan jump off a cliff, and if you use the jump key you can get some extra height out of it..... :D

 
At 1:57 PM, Blogger enemasteve said...

I've played WoW for about 4 years now, and I can honestly say that the trial accounts are just terrible. It won't give you well-rounded impression of the game at all. Now, I don't play FFXI but I'm an avid reader of this blog (first-time poster) but I don't see you actually enjoying WoW at this point in it's lifetime because the best days of WoW are behind it, and switching to a new MMO after playing and adapting to one for several years just isn't an enjoyable experience at all. I'll admit that WoW does have it's problems and that FFXI probably does do alot of things better, but it all comes down to preference and familiarity.

And yeah, don't roll a paladin for your first character. They're terribly boring for someone who doesn't know the game that well, and unfortunately Mulgore is one of the worst built zones in the game. Start a mage, get to the 11-20 zone on Horde side, and then you'll start enjoying yourself. But, once again, I know whenever I play a different MMO, I just get frustrated and bored when I realize I've done essentially the same thing in another skin for countless hours, and I usually can't get past the beginner stages of the game. That's just me though.

Also, RPing in WoW is the equivalent of removing your testicles with a Sarlaac pit. And then being skullf****d by a Wookiee. Just bad times.

 
At 2:03 PM, Blogger Tyler said...

In 3 days I was able to take every class in WoW to level 20 and simultaneously give every race a try too.

And that was playing about the same amount that I play FFXI on a daily basis, which isn't much more than a few hours.

 
At 3:09 PM, Blogger Kutekiddee said...

I'm so sick of these "The game doesn't start before level 80" comments. You know what, unless when you start a character it starts at level 80, the game better start before then.

I mean that's kinda like telling someone who is cutting their leg off with a saw "No keep going it'll hurt less when you're done."

If they only give you until level 20 to try the game, then I don't know maybe ... just maybe ... level 1 to 20 should be fun?

If someone has to keep telling me to keep at it because it gets better in the end ... then that game's cd is going to make a very expensive coaster.

 
At 3:27 PM, Blogger Salt said...

I suggest you take the advice of people above and not roll a paladin.

The class is very powerful, it can fill just about any role, and is tad bit OPed in PVP now, but is insanely boring to level.

As for the beginning levels being boring.
What do you expect?
You don't throw the all the class mechanics at a new player from the get go. You will drown the player and scare him off.

If you want to see what combat is like at high levels just pop over to
http://www.warcraftmovies.com/
and check out the PVP or raid content videos.

The trial I suppose is good for noobs who never play a MMORPG before, but if you are an experience player and want to see just how "deep the rabbit hole goes" you will probably need to get to higher levels to see what the game has to offer.

 
At 5:08 PM, Blogger Kelli said...

Personally I couldn't play a game with constant background music. My life doesn't need a soundtrack and neither does my game.

 
At 6:57 PM, Blogger J said...

....Playing a Tauren, and then a paladin? Are you trying to bore yourself to death? Paladin will be horrible and boring until minimum level 40, and that's only if you're a tankadin (I'm biased, shush). I would say roll a Draenei shaman, but you don't have the xpac... I advise rolling either a human rogue or a human mage. They're at the very least more interactive than paladin, and to be honest the starting zones for 80% of the races are terrible. At least the human one starts you out collecting grapes from an overrun vineyard for wine; surely you can appreciate that?

 
At 6:51 AM, Blogger Eric said...

yes the leveling in this game has been improved, they WANT you to get to level 70 and experience the best they have.

Sounds like a pretty smart idea to me. Rush them through the old crappy content so they can throw shiny objects and totally captivate you when you hit northrend

 
At 6:36 PM, Blogger Liz said...

They actually explain the crystals dropping off of everything in FFXI. It had something to do with every creature on the planet will crystallize when its killed.

I believe the cutscene that mentions it is the one when you first teleport from Hall of the Gods to sky?

 
At 10:13 AM, Blogger vampira said...

Admittedly the drop mechanics are kind of odd, and for all the years Ive been playing Ive always wondered why random furry animals drop plate armor... but meh. What irritates me more is when some dude tells you to bring him the head/heart/spleen (not joking) of some animal, you kill 40 of them - and it doesnt drop. Im pretty sure since until i murdered it the animal was, in fact, alive that it would have those body parts.

WoW is always World of Grindcraft from level 1 to level 80. Having to go farm random crap for quest givers is just how it rolls.

I play a paladin, I like it.

 
At 5:18 AM, Blogger Calendras said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At 5:22 AM, Blogger Calendras said...

I play a protection Paladin.

Everyone envy Paladins. That's a fact. Get over it.

But why does everyone insist that paladins don't have minions and pets?

I have lots of minions and pets each time I join a group.

Just the other night, I had one dwarf warrior pet, one night elf druid pet, one gnome pet and one dranei priest minion. All in my group.

I clearly remember all of those pets and minions of mine hinding behind my shiny shield seeking for protection and salvation.

oh those lovely -sometimes- useful cute pets and minios!

 

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