I finally met my Waterloo, the grind that even I cannot contemplate.
I have a long and grindy history in Azeroth. I thought nothing of doing Revered with the Aldor and then Exalted with the Scryer (requiring a hefty amount of basilisk-killing in the middle) with my paladin because I wanted all the jewelcrafting recipes. I ground my Night Elf priest to Exalted Stormwind faction pre-60 and pre-easy-rep-gains because I wanted a horse. I have maxed-out fishing, for god’s sake.
I didn’t flinch at the idea of grinding my way to Exalted with the Consortium (before all the solo and 5-man Consortium content in patch 2.2, to boot) or the Kurenai. I have every Burning Crusade faction, bar Scale of the Sands and Ashtongue Deathsworn, at Exalted. I’ve just hit Exalted with Stormwind and Argent Dawn, and I’m a couple of days away with Darnassus, Exodar and Cenarion Circle — then comes Timbermaw and Frostspring Wintersaber factions.
But I have met my match: the rep grind that makes me shudder and think “oh god, no“. This terror: the rep grind to get Exalted with the Bloodsail Buccaneers for a swanky Admiral’s hat and parrot pet. This grind would necessitate killing 1,300 level 67 elite mobs (who drop zero loot – not even coins) just to get to Friendly with the damn Buccaneers… and then I’d have to grind my way back up from Hated with all the Steamwheedle factions just so as not to get ganked the minute I set foot in one of their towns.
No. Just no. I don’t care how cool the hat looks. HONEST.
I recently posted about my difficulty in finding things to amuse me in the pre-Wrath period: everything I could think of to do was either boring, or irrelevant in the face of the upcoming expack.
Well, here’s something that’s been occupying me for the last few days: catching up on Achievements, in advance!
I’m a completionist and an explorer at heart, which means the Achievements system is going to occupy a lot of my time during the lifespan of Wrath. However, there are a bunch of Achievements that I can easily work on before Wrath Day.
First, I logged into the Wrath beta to check out the Achievements panel and found all the pre-WotLK achievements I hadn’t yet completed. (Those of you without access to the beta can do the same thing by checking out the WoWHead Achievement list.) I broke these down into subsets:
- Achievements I won’t get credit for until Wrath goes live: certain boss kills, a lot of PvP achievements, achievements like ’emote /love to one of every type of critter’, and so on. No point doing these in advance as I’d only have to redo them.
- Achievements I can’t complete until a certain time of year: these are all the Achievements for seasonal events that I haven’t yet completed, from ‘get all three pets from Azeroth’s Children’s Week’ to ‘discover an Elegant Dress by opening eggs during Noblegarden’.
- Achievements I can complete, but shouldn’t: yes, I can go and get 15 different non-combat pets right now, but I won’t have bag space for them until Wrath goes live with its new pet-and-mount storage system. I could do it now, but it’d be a lot smarter to wait.
- Fast and easy achievements I can complete now: mostly finishing off map exploration, chasing down those pesky few unexplored subzones, and making sure Achievement-earning quest chains are finished off (for example, the Nesingwary quests, completing X many quests in a given Outland zone, etc).
- More time-consuming achievements I can complete now: Can you say ‘rep grinds’? I knew you could! There are Achievements for gaining Exalted with specific factions and groups of factions, as well as getting a certain number of factions to Exalted overall.
And now I’ve been working on them. So far I’ve finished off a few of the individual general Achievements (like buying and equipping the “Gigantique” bag) and finished exploring every single Eastern Kingdoms zone. Now I’m working on factions, and I’ll break that up with some Kalimdor exploration.
None of it has any mechanical advantage, true. But it warms the cockles of my obsessive completionist heart to tick off all these little things I’d always meant to do but never had time to do – now I have time to do them, and a reason to boot.
(Tangentially, in one of my next few posts I’ll talk about some tips and tricks for levelling old-world factions, for those of you stranded in the doldrums of Revered reputation.)
I hate this time in the game’s lifecycle: that last couple of months before an expansion, where everything you could do is viewed in light of “well, is it worth it?”
It’s not that I’m not playing, or that I don’t want to play. I’m doing weekly Karazhans and 3-5 heroics a week on my priest, for badges; I’m doing dailies a few times a week for the cash injection. I’m still enjoying WoW – I’m not burnt out; I have no desire to stop or take a break.
But every time I think of a goal to shoot for, I can’t help but think “but that will be meaningless any day now”. I know, of course, that every goal is made obsolete sooner or later – gear is always replaced, level caps are always increased – but it’s right now with Wrath looming that it starts to affect my motivation.
There are certainly things I want to finish before Wrath Day, but most of them are, well, tedious prep-work – stockpile Honor and Arena points on my main, build up cash, et cetera. None of them are particularly exciting or motivating.
…I guess it’s back to levelling another alt.
What about you? What are you all doing to keep yourselves involved and motivated, as Wrath Day draws ever-closer?