Lash’s Adventures in Altville
Once upon a time in Azeroth, mon, I was a pretty good warlock. Mind you I wasn’t a serious raider back then but I could put up some nice Vanilla DPS numbers in my PvP blues and ZG epics. I knew what curse to cast. I could roll DoTs on multiple targets. I handed out healthstones one at a time to my group-mates and made sure I always had a soulstone up. I could control my pet and seemed to get good usage out of whichever diabolical minion I had at the time.
Nowadays, when I play my warlock in our alt friendly runs, I can’t seem to DPS for shit. I picked up a decent set of gear and tried a cookie cutter destruction spec for awhile when it was supposed to be tops and my DPS was really nothing to brag about. I tried an affliction spec (which is really where my heart lies – watching enemies die to a slow, agonizing death is a sick and twisted perversion of mine I guess. Welcome to my dark side.) Affliction lasted me a total of 2 hours on a target dummy. Not only could I not get the “rotation” down, I thought I was gonna develop carpel tunnel trying. Nowadays, I’m trying demonology. I told myself, “Self, get yourself a felguard and let him do the majority of the work.” Alas, I still don’t think I am playing to the classes potential. I guess I can comfort myself with my big purple demon form every few minutes. Least it looks cool.
When WotLK came out, I started a death knight. The only previous melee experience I’d had was a rogue (who’s at level 70 these days and still not very much fun) and I was intrigued by WoW’s version of the shadowknight. A master of undead? Check. Crippling diseases and a big ass two-hand axe/sword/club? Sign me up! Ripping space and time to snatch unsuspecting victims across the battlefield? “Get over here!” Hello again, dark side, I knew you were still lurking around somewhere in my subconscious. The starting area and quests for deathknights are amazing. Unique storytelling and my first experience with the new phasing technology. I was pretty jazzed about the prospects of playing a new class.
Then I ran some BC dungeons. Turns out I’m terrible at melee DPS. I can’t seem to keep up when a tank has to move mobs around. So I have pretty terrible uptime attacking. Plus, staring at a mob’s ass all night isn’t really my idea of fun.
So I decided that since I’d never had a “tank” in any game, I’d make my evil little toon one and try that out. I read up on the basics of tanking. I assembled a tank gear set and pestered Smorg (one of the best tanks I’ve ever played with regardless of how much he hates it and doesn’t believe he’s any good) endlessly for advice. I found that I am decent at it. Even if I do taunt the wrong mobs sometimes on boss fights with adds. Or forget to lay down Death and Decay. Or forget frost presence. Sometimes, Beru even let’s me tank raid instances. Mostly 10 mans but this week I stepped up to the big league and tanked ToC 25 (normal mode!). All my little quirks and mistakes aside, I don’t think I did too badly. Even our resident progression DK tank told me I did fine afterward.
The things is though: It’s not the most enjoyable thing for me. I feel like if anyone dies, it’s my fault. If I lose aggro and a big mean bossy eats some rogue’s face…well, OK, I don’t actually lose any sleep over rogue’s dying but you get my point. I also don’t feel like I have the patience to do it. DPS that don’t actually wait for me to try and get some semblance of threat makes me want to stab kittens. Repeatedly. I don’t have the patience to explain to them that if they start nuking Anub’s adds while I’m trying to corral them both and get them on the ice patches before they burrow, that my threat is not exactly super and there’s a good chance one is gonna smack them so hard their mother’s womb is gonna implode in real life. Plus staring at a boss’s crotch instead of his ass doesn’t really appeal to me all that much either.
So the question became: What can I play on off nights? What can I take to our alt-friendly runs that I really enjoy playing and still contribute to our success? I was a buff-bot and shaman healer (Iksar for life, yo!) through the majority of my 5ish years in EverQuest and had a brief stint as a holy priest on my original server in early Burning Crusade. I feel like I’ve put in my time keeping everyone alive and don’t really think I can contribute much to that aspect of the game. Melee (DPS or tanking) is ok but as I stated, I’m A) not very good at it or B) not patient enough to do it effectively. I like throwing magic around but as evidenced I think, I have an obsession with darker magic and space chickens, elemental shamans and fruity mages just don’t appeal to me all that much. I suppose the argument could be made for a shadowpriest, but I feel that if it’s a choice between two DoT classes, I’d just go with my warlock. Plus, as you’ll recall, I look good in demon form.
Finally, I settled on… wait for it… another hunter! At this point in the game, I decided that nothing is as much fun to me as hunting, even with all the concerns and complaints I have about the class. And as I replied to all the “WTF Lash?! Another hunter?!” my confused guildmates threw my way: “Only class I’m ‘good’ at. ‘Good’ being relative.”
I went Orc this time so I don’t have to hear more of Dendrite’s accusations of my WoW racism leveled at me. And I don’t know if I will get him to 80 and geared in time to enjoy our alt runs before Cataclysm hits. Merk keeps telling me the fastest way is to do marathon dungeon runs with the Dungeon Finder but I don’t think that’s the way for me. 1) the old dungeons are stupidly long in my opinion and 2) I don’t like a good portion of the people I raid with nightly why the fuck would I subject myself to playing with strangers I probably won’t like either? No, I think it’s the old fashioned quest grind for Lashaar. We hunters are nothing if not self reliant. All I really need is my bow, the latest incarnation of Jambi (a wolf this time!) and some arrows. Plus, baby Beastmastery Orc hunters in full heirlooms are way overpowered. And fun.
And fun is what I’m looking for these days.
– Lash (2.0)