Next stop, frozen hell
Welp. This is it. Today is the day that patch 3.3 drops…and after the obligatory extended expanded extended maintenance, we might even be able to actually play tonight. (Currently, servers are one hour late coming up and the clock is ticking.) Of course, after you factor in the hours of time it’ll take for some of us to make our heavily customized UIs workable again, the obligatory server wobblies, and the massive lag, we won’t be doing much more than chilling and RPing anyway. Which, honestly, is just fine! Tuesday is our informal Wildfire Riders roleplay night in Stormwind anyhow, and there’s Things to be discussed…so as Anna says, why not take patch night to roleplay instead of fighting the lag, instability, and addon hell of trying to instance or raid in Icecrown Citadel?
Anyhoo. I guess I’m in a bit of a burnout period on WoW, either that or all the crazy stuff going on in Real Life at the moment–demanding job, house move, four-year-old daughter, etc.–is doing a pretty good job of making me feel like I’m in a WoW burnout. While I’m looking forward to 3.3 and Icecrown, I’m not ZOMGHOLYCRAP enthused about it. Yes, I want out of Trial of the Big Round Room, badly. I need 41 more badges to get Linedan his fourth piece of T9.25 (the helm) and after that, the place can basically burn down for all I care. And the only reason I care about that is because the warrior T9 four-piece set bonus reduces the cooldown on Shield Block by 10 seconds. Shield Block up for 10 out of 30 instead of 10 out of 40? That’s just sexy right there. I’m on that like Tiger Woods on a cocktail waitress.
Icecrown Citadel itself, honestly, I know little about except for what Blizzard posted about the “gating” setup for it. I have not researched any of the fights in advance. I’m one of these weirdos that can watch videos and read strategies all day, but until I actually get in there and experience the fight, it’s not going to stick. (My raid officers are going to read this and /facepalm considering I’m a tank–sorry, guys, it’s the truth.) We’re going to walk in there at some point this week, and I’m probably going to be coming in pretty cold. And that’s OK. I pick stuff up fast.
And then there’s this new cross-server PUG dungeon tool whatchamacallit thang. I’m not so sure about that. Yes, Blizzard is offering some pretty big carrots to randomly pitch yourself into a group with four people not only from your server, but your battlegroup. But do you remember the last time you went into Alterac Valley and found yourself listening to Istabbdurmom and Mastablasta having an all-caps textspeak argument about strategy (“ALL ON O RUSH DB!!1!” “LOL STFU NOOB CAP SF FURST”) while Poosniffa sexually harassed your female toon and Neerdraaage kept whispering you “lolololol rp server nurd u sux”? Imagine that set in the middle of Oculus. You will have to decide if the title of “the Patient” and a Perky Pug pet is worth running the risk of that.
OK, maybe that’s a worst-case scenario. The pool of PUG recruits should improve dramatically in quality because of the significant rewards Blizzard is offering to subject yourself to cross-server instancing. But still, it’s a total crapshoot. You might end up in a group with a solid bunch of people and have an easy run. You might end up feeling like you landed in the middle of “Beavis and Butt-Head Play World of Warcraft” and realize all four of your groupmates are probably the result of inbreeding. Such are the vagaries of random numbers, and such will be your life in cross-server PUGs. I might not do them on Linedan, since I don’t like PUG tanking in general due to the stress level. But my DPS alts? Sure, why not? I raid with Beltar rarely, and the others never, so this would be a good way to slowly build badges and money.
There are, of course, a ton of other things in the patch–class changes, profession changes, PvP changes, etc. But really, just like patch 3.1 was about Ulduar and patch 3.2 was about the Trial of the Art Department Originality Fail, patch 3.3 is about Icecrown Citadel. It’s about closing the storyline of Warcraft III–Arthas Menethil’s betrayal, the fall of the North to the Scourge, the destruction of Silvermoon, Arthas’ flight to Northrend and his becoming the Lich King. It’s the third reel. It’s Act V. It’s time, after all the effort, to mount the final assault upon the stronghold of the Lich King and eradicate the leader of the Scourge from Azeroth once and for all…
…at least until the next raid reset.