Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Doldrums and what you can do about it

As I had mention, the doldrums are a normal phenomenon that in WoW every Summer that seems to be starting a bit early this year. We were short again last night for our raid into Ulduar but were able to scrape together a few new players that had just been guild invited in order to get the raid going a few minutes late. Unfortunately we were forced to endure 12 wipes over a two and a half hour period on the Iron Council, whom we had downed two to three times previously. Thursday we endured pretty much the same on this crew, so that was two days with probably 20+ wipes on this boss. And this is really the most agonizing outcome of the doldrums--that those remaining who continue to raid suffer from the inexperience of those to replace the players that left.

Whether you continue to raid is a personal choice you'll have to search your own heart for. But the real question comes down to what can you do in order to survive the coming few months of the doldrums when the main past-time seems to be taking a back seat to real life for a lot of players. The answer of course is achievements, PVP, leveling an alt, or learning a new skill set on your character.

Bringing the achievement system into WoW was one of the best things Blizzard has done with this game. It reinvigorated, to some degree, older content and gave meat to a system of informal goals that most players had been using individually heretofore. It gave a real means of comparing yourself against others in a competitive sense. And it certainly is something you can use to while away the Summer work on if you chose to do so.

PVP is another aspect of the game that I've always said is an acquired taste. PVP can be, and often is, brutal. Especially to the new players. But luckily there is no personal loss from the many deaths you will endure while learning to PVP and to acquire the gear you'll need to be truly successful there. Work toward putting together a PVP set. All the main pieces of arena gear obtainable from the honor vendor cost between 39k and 49k honor, so you should be able to obtain one piece of armor every few days. Say it'll take anywhere from two weeks to a month to put together the main set of helm, shoulders, chest, legs, and boots. After that you'll need two trinkets, two rings, cloak and necklace which are all around 30k honor as well. Say another two to four weeks for those remaining pieces. All together you're probably looking at six to eight weeks of solid PVP game play to keep you busy.

I myself like to PVP and have been accumulating a full PVP set, but I've also been leveling a Paladin which I intend to heal with and I plan on learning to tank with my DK as a secondary talent spec. I already have a fairly decent pre-raid tank set but I need to round it out with a few more items before I attempt any real tanking.

Between leveling and gearing the Paladin, and learning to tank on my DK (not to mention complete his PVP set) I know I'll have plenty to do over the summer. What you need to decide for yourself is what you will do. Its all a matter of perspective. Will you get lost in the doldrums, of will you make it into an opportunity?