Tag Archives: farming

More Fool Me

While I was waiting for patch 3.0.2 to arrive, one of the things I did was farming reputation – for fun, and for the achievements. I got myself Exalted with all five Alliance factions, Exalted with Cenarion Circle and Argent Dawn, and I’d farmed 34K rep of the 39K I needed for Exalted with Timbermaw Hold.

Off I trot today to finish off Timbermaw rep and get myself not one but two Achievements (plus a new title) – and I discover the rumor was right. Timbermaw faction handins now give twice as much rep.

Oh, furbolgs, why couldn’t you have been this easy to please a fortnight ago?

2008: New Year's Resolutions

Leafshine of Lust for Flower has posted New Year’s Resolutions for 2008, and it seems like the thing to do, so: herewith, my goals and hopes for WoW 08.

  1. Get as far as possible in endgame raiding. ’07 was a slow-paced year for my guild, raiding-wise; in ’08, I’m hoping we can see and succeed in a lot more content. Within reason, mind you, as we’re not a hardcore guild and have no desire to be – but there’s a lot of stuff out there that I’m really looking forward to. (And some that makes me wince to think about. Serpentshrine Cavern, I’m looking at you.)
  2. Experience the Wrath of the Lich King beta. I was lucky enough to be in the open beta for The Burning Crusade, and I loved it. It was a very different atmosphere from normal live servers; there was a real community cameraderie and spirit, and I made some good friends there. And I loved having the chance to see some stuff really fresh, and contribute to the community: I wrote a Jewelcrafting levelling guide that garnered thanks and appreciation for months, and it’s really nice to have a chance to make a difference like that.
  3. Get my shammy to 70. I’ve got two 70s already, my pally main and my mage farmer, but I’m really enjoying the elemental playstyle, and I’d enjoy questing on her (and some non-raid casual instancing, and perhaps PvP).
  4. Hit the ground running when WotLK comes out. I kind of missed the boat on TBC: I was there for the midnight release, but I didn’t make the most of the month-ish immediately thereafter. I was burnt out on guild drama (we’d had some nasty stuff go down at the end of ’06); I was burnt out on levelling (my mage hit 60 on the day of TBC’s release after a lot of straining on my part); and I was fairly unwell to boot, so I was very unfocused. So I missed out on a lot of my guild’s original push through the TBC content, and constantly felt as though I was floundering behind. When WotLK hits, I intend for things to be very different.
  5. Farm up a lot of cash. I hate being skint in WoW, and I always am. Altaholism is an expensive condition, and a total lack of patience with farming compounds the problem.
  6. Get to Exalted with the League of Arathor (Arathi Basin faction) and the Silverwing Sentinels (Warsong Gulch faction). Apart from the Draenei-only tabard, I have every single tabard the Alliance has ever had access to – apart from the AB and WSG tabards. This must be rectified.
  7. Get to Exalted with the Winterspring Frostsaber trainers. I don’t desperately want the Frostsaber mount, but it is nice, and it’s another faction to work on that I’ve never tried out before. With the improved rep rewards (250 rep per hand-in, instead of 75) it’ll be doable, instead of soul-destroying.
  8. Keep up this blog. I can be a bit sporadic about posting, sometimes, but I do have a lot to talk about. Heck, I have an index card with a nice long list of things I want to talk about here.

So, those are my resolutions: most are applicable to pre-WotLK WoW, because I don’t really know what’s specifically in store come WotLK. If I get all these done before WotLK, I’ll post a revised list for post-expansion goals. :)

What are yours?

Farming for Shattered Sun Rep

If your server is anything like mine, finding groups for Magister’s Terrace can be … challenging, to say the least, since apparently every single tank has gone on holidays this month and the only ones left are kinda Donald-y. But you want your Shattered Sun faction, don’t you, for those tasty recipes and epics? And the dailies just don’t roll your faction rewards in fast enough…

Lo, paladin, find yourself a friendly mage, preferably one who’s as eager for SSO rep as you are so they don’t bitch and moan about how tedious this is going to be.

Then hie thee to Magister’s Terrace, and kill the first four mobs. Over and over again.

  1. Set it to normal mode. Do not try this on Heroic unless you are uber.
  2. Zone in, pally in tanking gear (with tanking buffs, ie Righteous Fury *ahem*), salv the mage.
  3. Take the first pair, making sure the patrol isn’t pathing anywhere nearby.
    • This pair will be 2x Mage Guards. They’re basically melee mobs, although they have an annoying ranged damage/stun attack called Glaive Throw.
    • Sheep one, tank the other. Tank and spank, and the pally should have little risk of dying unless things go pear-shaped.
    • Of note: when they throw their magic dampening field thingy, pull them out of it and tank them a decent way away from it. The field dampens all spell attacks against them, which makes them slow as hell for your mage to kill, and your threat generation drops to almost nothing.
    • Before breaking the sheep, bandage yourself back up to reasonable health. Then kill the second one.
  4. Eat and drink back to full health. Don’t bother trying to heal yourself up; your mana pool is tiny and your heals won’t do jack. It’s quicker to just eat as well as drinking.
  5. Check out the patrol. There are a number of mobs that can be in the patrol:
    • Warlock: very high dps caster, fire based, with an imp pet. The pet should always be the first thing to die.
    • Magister: frost-based caster, fairly high DPS but manageable.
    • Physician: a melee mob, despite the name, with a poisoned melee attack. Fairly trivial.
    • Mage Guard: same type of mobs as in the first stationary pull. (I think these are potentially in this patrol, although I can’t remember.)
    • Blood Knight: pain in the neck. A paladin mob with a self-heal (or cross-heal if you have another mob up as well) and an aura/dot that does a surprising amount of damage.
  6. Tips for dealing with the patrol:
    • Physician + Magister: the easy pair. Sheep the magister, kill the physician, then kill the magister.
    • Some other combo: relatively easy. If the patrol has the blood knight or the warlock, sheep that mob first. If it has both, then read on.
    • Warlock + Blood Knight: the difficult pair. Sheep the warlock, tank the blood knight, kill the imp, then kill the blood knight. The pally should be ready to interrupt the blood knight’s heal with a stun; the mage should be ready to spellsteal the blood knight’s buff as soon as it appears. Once the blood knight is down, bandage and regen some mana – drink a potion if you’ve got some cheap ones (eg Major Combat Mana Potions) on hand. You don’t want to tackle the warlock when you’re already half-dead and low on mana.
    • The reason I suggest this order is: if the warlock breaks sheep early while you’re killing the blood knight, the warlock will get a spell off and do a bit of damage before being resheeped, no big deal. If the blood knight breaks sheep early while you’re killing the warlock, the knight will get a heal off and you’ll have to kill the warlock all over again, which – given how much damage they do – could well be fatal.
  7. Zone out. Eat, drink, reset the instance.
  8. Perform above steps four more times.

This will net you 240 rep (264 for humans) in about 20-30 minutes, and will use up your five instance resets for the hour. Go make some lunch, do some chores, come back in half an hour, and repeat steps 1-8 again.

I used this to push me over the line to Revered so I could make my healing trinket in time for our first night in Mount Hyjal, since the daily quests were going to reset in the middle of the raid. I used this again today to push me over the line to Exalted so I didn’t have to wait til tonight for a fresh daily reset to get more rep.

Obviously, this is not an awesome way to get to Revered or Exalted SSO by itself. However, a few iterations of this – if it’s in company with a partner you enjoy playing with – can be a fun way to polish some skills and get just that bit of extra rep to reach a particular milestone when you choose, instead of being dependent on being able to get proper Magister’s Terrace groups.

How to be a Happy Farmer

There’s a lot of stuff in the game that requires farming, and farming is pretty tedious by itself. You can skip it if you want, but you miss out on quite a lot like that.

I know farming. Since TBC’s been released, I’ve solo farmed my way to:

  • 375 fishing skill
  • Exalted with Consortium
  • Exalted with Kurenai
  • Revered with Aldor
  • …and then Exalted with Scryers (starting from Hated) because I wanted all the Jewelcrafting patterns

So, here are a few tips and tricks.

1. Break the job into chunks.
Don’t try and fish yourself from 300 skill to 375 in a day. It’ll seem like a dishearteningly mammoth task, you’ll burn yourself out, and never pick up your fishing rod again – not much point in having 375 skill at that point, is there?

Instead, just say to yourself “I’m going to get 5 skill points on this fishing trip before I log off and play that alt instead.” Do that, and do another 5 points later in the evening. You’ll get your 75 fishing skill within a couple of weeks, and you’ll still be fairly sane to boot. Apply the same principle to anything you’re farming – “just another 10 drops and I’ll go”.

2. Maximise your returns.
Take a look at what your goal is, and work out how you can get incidental benefits.

  • Farming Consortium rep? Why not kill the Ogres in Nagrand for their warbeads – they drop Crystal Powder Samples for Halaa token rewards (like an 18-slot bag), and they give Kurenai/Maghar rep with every kill to boot. I hit exalted with Kurenai solely through Consortium rep grinding.
  • Trying to level your fishing skill? Why not fish up, say, Deviate Fish in the Barrens? They still sell very well on most servers (especially if you have the recipe to cook them yourself), they’re easy to fish, and you still get skill points for them.
  • Trying to get Dampscale Basilisk Eyes to go from Aldor to Scryer alignment? Cut a deal with a friendly caster who might like to buy all the Chunks o’ Basilisk you’ll wind up with – those things make great spell damage buff food.

Be creative and opportunistic to see what else you can get out of it when you’re farming for a specific goal. Also, be openminded about ways to reach your goal. For instance, I was having troubles with Scryer rep – I was trying to farm for Sunfury Signets, but as a holy pally I found it hard to kill the blood elves fast enough to get a decent rate of return. So I switched back to farming for Aldor rep items off the various demons in Netherstorm – the increased DPS I could get from my demon-specific damage spells turned frustration into ease (not to mention the fact that unlike blood elves, demons don’t run away at 10% health to fetch five buddies). On my server, you can trade Aldor and Scryer items at a 1:1 ratio in the trade channel, so I just farmed for Aldor items, traded them for Scryer items, and handed them in. Presto, exalted.

3. Distract yourself.
No matter how efficient you are, farming is boring because it takes very little mental effort.

So, distract yourself. I find podcasts work really well for this purpose – a farming session is about the only time I listen to podcasts, but they certainly do the job nicely. Other people I know recommend audio books. If you have friends you don’t see very often, hop on Skype or an IM service that allows voice chats, and natter away with them.

A friend of mine on the other side of the world talked me through the killing of about 789235238 ogres for my Consortium rep – he works from home and keeps funny hours, so we’d power up iChat and voicechat for hours at a time… I barely even noticed the ogres falling under my mighty hammer.