Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Patch 5.2: One week in

It's been nearly a week since servers came back online with a host of new content, including a new daily quest hub and a 12-boss raid. Have you consumed all that you could consume? Are you sated? Though my guild isn't prepared to head straight into the Throne of Thunder, I've been living vicariously through friends who have been killing bosses since last Tuesday. Aside from archaeology, I've been able to dabble in all of the new content introduced with 5.2. Thoughts below!

The Isle of Thunder

Recently, I heard a comment likenking the Isle of Thunder to Tol Barad. The color palettes do seem similar, though the Isle is chock full of rocks and walls and temples and hills, all of which can make bee-lining across the map to your destination rather precarious. Which I like. The mobs hit quite hard, and I'm getting accustomed to being regularly knocked off of my mount when riding within arms reach of a mogu or troll.

Surprisingly, I've somehow found enough time for dailies this past week, only missing last night's round on the Isle. But with only the first section of the island open, there are about a dozen dailies currently available to players. Chances are that the next section of the Isle will have been unlocked before I post this. I'm hoping they advance the story progression in a way that doesn't involve simply tacking on a half-dozen dailies to the current laundry list.

The Isle of Giants

Dinosaur island! Aside from the fact that now every hunter and their best hunter friend can tame a direhorn and name it some variation of "Cera," there are pets and two mounts to be earned by any player willing to invest a little amount lot of time. The island is full of elite trolls and dinosaurs. And the dinos come in two varieties: badass elite and superbadass elite, the latter of which you don't even want to make eye contact with unless you have a group of hardy friends with you.

The thing I really like about this island is that in order to accomplish anything efficiently, you really have to do so in a group. It hearkens back to the days of yesteryear when group quests were a real, regular thing. While the Isle of Giants doesn't really entail much story progression, sometimes it's nice to join up with some friends just to murder stuff.

New elite battle pets

5.2 introduced the Beasts of Fable quest that pits pet battlers against elite pets. These pets are so elite they're going to take you on 1v3. There's ten in all, and once defeating the lot, players earn an achievement and access to the Beasts of Fable daily quest.

And I'm torn. On one hand, I found the battles to be much easier than some of the level 25 tamers I've encountered in the past. Battle with two pets from families featuring strong attacks against your opponent and...next! On the other hand, I've won a hell of a lot of battles in order to even be in the position to fight the elite pets. That defeating them didn't take much effort isn't a bad thing.

Owning the farm

I bought the farm with the Main, even though he's maxed out all rep and thus won't benefit from the new work orders. The Alt, subsequently the only other toon I have at 90, has taken full advantage of the work order system and is currently gaining Klaxxi and Golden Lotus rep by planting & harvesting pumpkins and turnips.

It's not a fast method to gain rep, but it's nice to slowly chip away at it while concentrating on the new content with the Main.

Easing up on the alts

It is noticeably easier to land gear off of 5.0 world bosses and raids. The Main netted 15 Elder Charms after receiving a Key to the Palace of Lei Shen, and spent several of them to win a half-dozen pieces for his healing set. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to find a key with the Alt, but even spending the three Elder Charms he had on hand netted two pieces of gear. Couple that with the reputation gains from commendations, and the option to gain rep on the farm, 5.2 did bring some nice changes that makes it a little easier to move another character through previous content. Several pieces of gear, acquired through the new factions, are also accessible to players early on, providing a nice little ilvl bump.


Overall, the excitement I normally feel on patch day quickly waned; it's back to same-old World of Warcraft, thought that may be in part because the guild I help manage is going through a rebuilding phase, and it's taken some focus away from actual play time. Perhaps when everything settles I'll be able to dive into more content with a fresh perspective. If you've read this far, what are your thoughts on the new content? Too much? To little? Just right? Too soon?

1 comment:

  1. It has got me playing more again. I like the dailies on Thunder Isle and I love Jurassic Pa--er Giant Island. I like that you can help kill quest mobs and rares without having to group!
    (Yep, I am anti-social. But I do enjoy grouping with guildies to farm elite dinosaurs. Go figure.)

    I haven't yet set foot into a raid this expansion. I am trying to get psyched up to do the first LFR--which is the only one I can get into. This is mainly because I feel squishy doing the new dailies and I don't like that...so I must get some better gear.

    I have guildies who mainly only pet battle. They are so happy about all the new panda pets. Eventually I will level my pets enough to get there too.

    My end thought is that 5.2 brought a good helping of content. It doesn't seem like too much to me because I am purposely reining myself in on dailies so I don't get burned out again. This means one character does them and is only allowed to do two factions at the most a day. After that I go play my long neglected (and much missed) 85s and slowly edge them closer to 90. :)