Expansion Day! Part 1 on Battle for Azeroth

Today is the day that Warcraft fans have been waiting for, even moreso after the events of the pre-patch. In an expansion that is supposed to be about choosing allegiances, we are getting repeated reminders that there are no winners in war. Ignoring the debate of why the events happened as they did (I have several theories that I buy into, which I may dedicate an entire second blog), the events of the xpac did take place and they were heart wrenching. I played both sides of the scenario and I witnessed players on the horde side lamenting about how hard it is to fight for the horde after everything. Maybe that’s the entire point of the xpac. Soldiers aren’t meant to think about the actions of their leaders; they are meant to follow. And we are. And I repeat: Zappiboi for Warchief.

In this xpac, much like every other before that, I have made the difficult decision to stick with my original main: a human priest. I love my Void Elf, but I just can’t seem to take the plunge and swap mains despite how it is far cooler than the humans are. Though, let’s face it: most races are.

I will be doing a series of posts this week in addition to streaming the new xpac. If you want to follow me, check the sidebar for the channel link. This first part  of the blog will discuss my predictions for launch as well as some advice from playing in the beta.

First, my predictions. It’s a Blizzard launch of a major patch/game. It will be laggy, buggy, and annoying. Especially after the big item squish patch that broke the game. Don’t complain about it. You’ve played Blizzard games long enough to know this, I shouldn’t have to remind you. Just deal with it or wait until tomorrow when they hotfix the problems. (Or over the course of the next few weeks.)

I also predict that most players on Alliance side are going to go with the Tiragarde Sound, which will contain the Jaina storyline. She has gained waifu status after that incredibly awesome cutscene, so that will probably be the busy zone. Me? I’m starting off in Drustvar. In the beta, I really loved that storyline the best so it was the most enjoyable zone for me. It may be busy because the consensus is that Drustvar was the best zone in beta, but they could have withheld all of the cool things for launch. (Entirely plausible. Don’t want to give everything away.)

Okay, so that last one was also a tip. Here are some more:

  • When you get max level, the Battle of Stromgarde is amazingly fun as are the island expedition. Plus, getting free loot for seemingly little work is always a good thing.
  • Flynn on the Alliance side is hilarious and I wish he were real so we could be best friends.
  • The instances are a little gimmicky but I miss having mechanics that you actually needed to pay attention to in instances. Makes it more important to pay attention rather than playing Bejeweled. Sorry, wrong xpac.
  • I’m Pro-Night Elf and want them to destroy Sylvanas. Or the demon controlling her. (Maybe?) It will be really interesting to see what happens to this story later one.

Happy hunting, WoW players. The Battle for Azeroth will be upon us at 6pm on the east coast. I will start my stream around then, to share the bugs and the excitement of the release.

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Overwatch League Stage 2 Finals and Other Gaming Announcements

The Overwatch League was full of fun this week, with some really shocking moments. My Uprising wasn’t in contention for the Stage 2 playoffs, but they went out strong with an unexpected California sweep, defeating both L.A. teams in their matches this week. In their match against the Gladiators, the Fusion waited in the crowd to see their fate in the playoffs which rested in the hands of the Uprising. If they were to at least win 1 game against the Gladiators, Fusion would get the 3rd spot in the playoffs. Uprising ultimately went 3-2 in the match, which meant Fusion would go up against the Stage 1 champions the London Spitfire.

Without the Uprising in, I defaulted to my second favorite team. I expected them to easily take on Fusion, then go against New York for the championship again. In a 3-2 match, Fusion upset the Spitfire and went against the top team in the league: New York XL. This match also went into the tie breaker map, only Fusion fell to XL and New York took home the Stage 2 championship trophy and money.

The next stage will bring in some interesting changes, especially with the Shanghai Dragons being able to play their new players including the much hyped Zarya player Geguri. They are currently 0-20, so here’s to hoping that they don’t go the whole season without a win. I’m especially excited to see Geguri, not because she’s the first female in the Overwatch League but because her videos of playing Zarya are just insane. I wish I could play tanks as well as she can.

In other gaming news, I have recently received my Alpha invite to the “Battle for Azeroth” World of Warcraft expansion. After much convincing, I’ve decided to not just blog about it but to also stream and post videos of game play. I’ve never streamed before and I’m told I sound like a Smurfette on the headset, but here’s to trying. Look for me on Leighanneore on Twitch and I should be starting sometime this week.

Allied Races and You

World of Warcraft’s latest expansion is out for pre-order, but much like every other time there are excellent incentives to ordering it before its release. In this case, you get access to 4 of the 6 allied races: the Void Elves, Highmountain Tauren, the Lightforged Draenei, and the Nightborne. The last two allied races, the Dark Iron Dwarves and the Zandalari Trolls, have yet to be released but it will be interesting to see how these former foes in the story’s lore decide to join the Alliance and Horde.

I was most excited that once again, Blizzard listened to my hopes and dreams despite everyone telling me it was never going to happen. In Burning Crusade, I wanted to be a demon hunter. For ages prior to Mists of Pandaria, I wanted to play a Pandaren. These were my goals and dreams. When Pandarens were announced, I squealed with excitement and immediately rubbed it in everyone’s faces. When demon hunters were finally released, I did the same. I have no grace. I like to be right. I like to get what I want. And I did. The Pandarens were pretty disappointing though, but the demon hunters were everything that I dreamed they would be.

The minute I got to Suramar and saw the Nightfallen, I wanted to be one. I would do anything to play that race. They were awesome. I kept telling everyone that they should be a playable race. Now they are. But, instead of waiting for the expac to be released and disappointed, I can indulge my wishes now. The minute that I could afford to purchase it, I did. Then I started the time sink to create these characters. Here is my takeaway from it.

The story for the Lightforged Draenei was neat. I enjoyed that questline to unlock them. The Void Elf story was interesting, a little longer than the Lightforged in my opinion, but it was still decent. One of my favorite quests was the Nightborne one, not just because it was quick and simple but because it was pretty interesting as well. The Highmountain Tauren quest to unlock the race was much like the quests in Highmountain: long, time-consuming, and really not worth the reward at the end of everything. It made me remember why with every other alt, I never went to that zone to level up.

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Blueleigh, the Void Elf Priest

My first choice to level was ultimately my Void Elf. I am leveling as a shadow priest, my 3rd shadow priest. I thought a priest was the best fit for her and thought her shadowform would be even cooler. I was right. I may even main swap her, giving up my main that I have had since the beginning. The leveling is a slow grind, but I enjoy the menial work. What I like so far is how OP Void Eruption is at a low level. You could pull as many mobs as you can and it will instakill any that you have dotted up. It’s insane. I love it. Her racials seem so/so. The Spacial Rift ability reminds me of Moira’s Fade ability. Preternatural Calm is also quite nice, since is prevents the casting delay when getting attacked. Entropic Embrace (bonus to shadow damage and healing) also seems pretty powerful at lower levels as well. However, I have no real use for more void storage, so getting a discount on this doesn’t really impact my life. After my void elf, I will move onto my Nightborne which I am really excited about trying out.

Once you unlock these characters (which requires some achievements in addition to the questline), as long as you have a level 110 on the server you can create your new character. They start off as a level 20, but leveling these days is quick enough. It is still tedious until you get flying, which they should give us veterans the ability to do imo. You probably have plenty of time to get these characters leveled and geared up by the time the game is actually released, so happy hunting!