First 5 days of Warlords: Gearing up, garrisons, and hunter stuff

I know it’s been a few days since I’ve posted, but I’ve got a good excuse with, you know, Warlords coming out and all. I was thankfully immune from most of the launch issues.  I was there at the first minute, and with a group of guildies I managed to get ahead of the main crowd. I was level 99 by the time I logged off for good after a very long Thursday. Then Friday morning I hit 100.

One thing I’ve been pretty amazed about regarding the site is the insane amount of traffic the Gara taming guide post has been getting. Over 125,000 people have viewed it so far. Clearly Gara is a popular thing! As nice as it is to have a guide on how to do it all, I can’t help but wonder if we’d still be trying figuring it out had it not been possible to do the datamining… or even know to look in the data at all.

A lot of people have requested an uncorrupted version of Gara, like she is when you first find her. I think it would be amazing if Blizzard snuck in a future followup (without telling us it was going in) where you could uncorrupt her somehow. *wink wink* *hint hint*


Gearing up

I’m pretty far into the initial gearing process at this point, at 625 ilvl and sporting the 680 ilvl version of the legendary quest ring.  I had a head start with getting into heroics thanks to the Dwarven Bunker / War Mill building providing some very nice upgrades from Spires of Arak and Nagrand quests (some of it as high as ilvl 630, the same ilvl as heroic dungeon loot).

Inside heroics, I’ve been pretty fortunate with the loot as well. I haven’t gotten a weapon yet (still using heirloom), but plenty of armor upgrades.

As for what to craft first with engineering and leatherworking, I’m still not sure. I was dead set on the goggles being first for engineering, until I learned you get a guaranteed ilvl 640 helm from the upcoming Molten Core anniversary event. The goggles can be upgraded though… so I’ll make them eventually. I don’t know, maybe the gun? Historically I have terrible luck with weapon drops. Here’s a true story for you: I never saw a single Throne of Thunder weapon drop in any guild raids (or from bonus rolls). I was actually using a heroic scenario weapon the whole time.

So maybe I will make the gun. My one concern is they seem to have removed the 3rd upgrade option. I can see the schematic for True Iron Trigger, but not Blackrock Rifling.  I know that, historically, Blizzard is a bit stingy when it comes to weapons. They like to make it as difficult as possible to get a decent one, so I’m wondering if they changed their minds on having ilvl 655 crafted weapons? If that’s the case, I hope they at least give the ilvl 640 version the ilvl 655 model. That would be a complete waste to not use it. Or maybe it’s just an oversight (though I did report this on beta as both a bug and to the developers on Twitter). One more thing about the gun: It now counts towards your limit of 3 crafted pieces. For the longest time it did not.

Leatherworking is a shot in the dark, because you never know what piece of raid armor you’ll get first. I’ll probably flip a coin on the chest or legs.

This has all gotten very rambling, so I’m going to stop now.

No... just... no.
No… just… no.


I stuck to my original plan laid out in this post. While everyone around me was downing those 20% XP potions that cost a whopping 100 garrison resources, I declined. They hit level 100 a couple of hours before me. Whoopdee-freaking-doo. I was able to turn my garrison into a level 3 one while they struggled to gather 2000 resources. So while the Lumber Mill and Trading Post have been pretty popular with a lot of people to get extra resources, I got mine elsewhere. Rares and treasures. LOTS of them. I’ve already discovered about 110 of the 200+ available, and still haven’t gotten to all the rares.

I’m progressing steadily on the Stables quests for my new mounts (and also getting a ton of resources from those in the process) and also having fun with the 2 daily dungeon quests from the inn. A word of warning on those. They don’t mention if they require you to be in heroic or not, so it’s best to check the quest log in more detail or the Wowhead page for the quest. My two favorite rewards I’ve received so far from those quests would have to be Orallus’ Whispering Crystal and the Void Totem.

I’ve got five level 100 followers now, but they still need to be geared out. The Salvage Yard is helping with that but it’s slow moving. Next step will be to take the bunker to level 2 so I can make some more follower gear with work orders.

Feral druid pets... CONFIRMED!
Feral druid pets… CONFIRMED!

Still playing Beast Mastery

Old habits die hard. I still haven’t seen much reason to go MM, plus I’m enjoying my fancy new pets too much. We’ll see how things change once the raid opens up.

The spec has been doing fine in heroics, I have no problems topping the meters at all (I realize saying this means nothing in a random 5-man). But it doesn’t seem to be doing too badly. I find myself using Explosive Trap a hell of a lot more now that it’s been slightly buffed and also had the DoT sped up to 10 seconds. I’ve been using it enough that every once in a while I get this voice in the back of my head that says “try survival!” until I tell it to stop being crazy.

I have to say that the buffs they did to Blood of the Rhino right before Warlords are pretty amazing. Instead of increasing armor, it reduces all physical damage taken by 15%. It also increases your pet’s health by 80% so your pet has way more health than you do. My pet (with the Adaptation talent) has no problem face tanking multiples of the hardest elites Draenor has to offer, like those big ones for Steamwheedle reputation in Nagrand.

My best moment in heroics so far was in Auchindoun. The group I joined into was freshly ilvl 610, so it was at the point where I had more health than the tank. We wiped quite a bit along the way, but I stuck with it because I try not to be an ass and ragequit after a few wipes. Also, the expansion only being a couple of days old and all. Anyway, on the final boss after about 6 wipes everyone starts dying when the boss is at about 15% health. Since I was the only ranged, I had to kite the Infernal the entire fight. So suddenly I am the last one alive, kiting this giant infernal, and now the boss is after me. I feign death, get the boss on my pet, and go to town. Boss starts nuking me with some ability I can’t interrupt. 11%. Things are looking grim. My Kill Shot button is almost done cooldown. I begin to mash it. At about 40 yards away, the shot goes off and I die immediately. Damn, looks like a wipe. Everyone else releases their corpse and just as they do that the achievement pops up. Turns out the fight is done at 10%, and my Kill Shot in flight finished him off.

Overall, I’m enjoying the heroics quite a bit. Just the right amount of challenge.

Dragon Age… why do you have to come out now?

This isn’t WoW related, but I’m going to leave you with this kick ass Dragon Age Inquisition trailer. The game comes out tomorrow, and I am ridiculously excited to play it. Why oh why did it have to come out now? There needs to be more hours in the day. First world problems, am I right?

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17 thoughts on “First 5 days of Warlords: Gearing up, garrisons, and hunter stuff”

  1. I only got to 100 on Sunday afternoon, so I’m a little “behind”. Haven’t gotten into any heroics yet (iLvL is 598 or something) and my garrison is still level two. I want to finish the Nagrand quests and then I’ll work harder on gearing up. I probably won’t be raiding, so it doesn’t matter a whole lot, but still…

    The bonuses from Adaptation are awesome. It’s cool to see my pet with more health than me.

    DA:I is already pre-installed in preparation for the launch. The icon is staring at me on my desktop… But I’ll have to put off playing it for a while. Too much to do in WoW right now.

    Speaking of too much to do, I wish the Apexis quests weren’t dailies… It’s such a pain to get behind because you don’t have time to complete them one day. I really preferred the weeklies model they started with the Barrens quests and continued with Timeless Isle.

  2. Garrisons look to play way to big a role for me to have any hope of getting serious about the game again. They took away a ton of active complexity and replaced it with passive complex drudgery. I don’t usually go in for “doomsday” scenarios but this just may be the mid-level player deathknell. I blew through everything at 90 in essentially crafted gear. It was what I could do with the time and patience I had. I won’t have that option in WOD unless I devote a big chunk of time to the farm … er … Garrison. And then … 3 crafted items? What possible explanation is there for this limit? All I see ahead are roadblocks. I am sad.

    1. They said they limited it to 3 items so they could make the crafted items “good.” I suppose fully upgraded they are close to heroic raid loot for this tier. Almost everyone I’ve talked to enjoys the garrisons, sorry you don’t 🙁

      1. Thanks. The 3 may get there … but at what pace? Below someone referenced a Facebook game … I never do Facebook, but my partners young sons (8 and 14) do … and they said the same thing.

  3. Somehow I missed the fact that crafted gear is limited to 3 items. For players like myself who don’t have time to raid and got really excited about being able (with lots of hard work) to craft a full set of powerful gear this is a big disappointment. Maybe they will increase the amount that can be worn in future patches?

    That said, I am really pleased with the expansion overall. The Garrison is great fun and between treasure hunting and the excellent quests I haven’t even had time to really try the 5-mans!

    I may consider trying to get into PvP this expansion too, depending on how it feels.

    On a hunter note, I was determined to stick with my survival spec and ran with it through all of Shadowmoon Valley. Unfortunately in the end I had to crumble and thought I would give Marksman a shot. It does feel very clunky and resource intensive compared to survival but the huge leap in DPS is very welcome and the transition was not nearly as painful as I had anticipated.

  4. Now for a serious Hunter question: is there an addon to track Exotic Munitions buff? Something that would show me that the buff is off so I have to re-apply it. Thanks.

  5. Lots of stuff to praise so far…but there is one nagging thing I am hating. Instead of gear being gated behind dailies…its is now gated behind real life time..doing nothing but waiting for the next day and CD.

    I should be able to grind out stuff in game for items but instead…i play for 10 mins…go in mine get ore…use engi CD and set engi work plans and then..then…..nothing

    I cannot go and grind out more stuff to make my gun or goggles.

    Is this a MMO? b/c this expansion is feeling a lot like a facebook game….i am just waiting for the micro-transactions. Where the button to buy more resources? Where the button to speed up work orders?

    I have fond memories of being a noob in BC and grinding out mats for the engi weapon. So close to have that xp again…but instead of farming mats….i am waiting for tomorrow and CDs.

    1. A scary thought.

      Could you imagine? A real money materials vendor and ‘pay £4.99 to complete your stacked work orders’.

  6. I’ve pretty much permanently got your Gara guide up at the moment. I’m in no hurry as I still love Loque, but I’m keeping an eye out for the bits I need to pick up around Draenor. I’m going zone-by-zone so I can explore while I slowly go through the quests. It’s very fun.

    I’ve tried MM and I love the crazy damage it’s doing, even without Lone Wolf because as I said on Twitter last night.. why the heck would I willingly give up my pets when I’m such a dirty casual, am I right? I may go back to BM, it’s my personal favourite. I love the movement and the exotic pets and Kill Command, but it’s nice to try things out.

    1. From the guide Bendak posted, I pretty much nailed the entire taming in around 2-3 hours, with only level 91 gear (although my character was level 93 when she started and 95 by the end). Very easy. Even the level 100 elites at the end were simple, as long as you choose the voidcallers (the ones with 204k health), not the void lords (the ones with 1024k health).

      My only big issue with Gara was getting the void lantern, but I finally figured out a really easy method: just sleep the wolf, and then nuke all the way. Once you loot the body and get the lantern, the wolf starts chasing you. Then just feign death and portal back to Garrison, and then take a flight to Karabor to get to the tree and polish off the tame.

  7. Gotta say, I’m loving MM for leveling. One shot, one kill.

    Or two kills, if chimaera double crits.

    Its like vanilla AV, except I’m killing NPCs instead of mages.

  8. Because of my Warmill my Longbow of Trials upgraded to a whopping 640, replacing my BoA bow from SoO and meaning weapon-wise I am set for the moment. It is a shame the Blackrock Rifling only works with engineered guns.

    P.S. BM 4 life!

  9. Bend, according to Wowhead, the Blackrock Rifling recipe doesn’t show up on Eng vendor until after you’ve purchased the recipe for True Iron Trigger. Just a heads-up =)

  10. Hi Bendak, I tweeted you but thought I’d post here as seeings as you do talk about gearing in this post. I didn’t play Mists other than a couple of quests here and there for FoS achievments so I’m behind the curve as far as iLvl is concerned (no BOA weapon, legendary cape etc) and am now stuck between Skyreach and all other dungeons (I literally can’t queue for them and they are my primary gearing method early on as I tire of questing quickly). I was wondering if you were thinking about a BiS list for Hunters through to the first raid tier (all sources). I’m also confused as different sites are advocating different stat priorities for BM which I’m using exclusively at the moment. I know that early on it doesn’t really matter however it would be nice to have some clarity. I’m stacking mastery where possible but the rest, – crist, haste, multistrike, versatility, etc are where I lose the plot.


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