Sunday, July 8, 2012

Things Cataclysm brought

Patch 5.0 is soon on the PTR, which means that Mists of Pandaria is fast approaching, which also means that it is almost time to bid Cataclysm farewell.

Bye bye Deathwing
A lot of gamers seem to have been a bit lukewarm about this expansion. It was fun while it lasted, but it wasn't that epic or challenging or memorable, say a lot of players. Content-wise, I think so too. I never really got into the Deathwing-story. I missed some kind of common theme in this expansion, like there was in Wrath. At the same time, Cataclysm has brought a ton of things I now can't do without:

- Flying in Azeroth: Remember flying the first time on your own mount over Azeroth? It was so cool! When Cata hit, I was level 78 or thereabouts, and I was so jaleous of all those people who could buy their Azeroth flying. I power-levelled like crazy and was incredibly happy when I could finally purchase that flying license. I spent over two hours flying all over Azeroth and being all squeaky and excited over all the different zones and being able to see it all from above. Awesome.
TransmogrificationOkay, so this is one of the more recent changes in the game, but it´s still something Cata brought! I am a huuuuuuuge fan of Transmogrification. It´s such an intergral part of my gaming now I can't even remember ever having done without it. I totally spend many hours running old instances assembling outfits, stalking other hunters for inspiration and being a total girl. Love it.
No more ammo: Back in Wrath, when I was playing as mage, I made a Draenei hunter alt out of curiosity of hunters. I didn't really play her past level 10, but I remember that back then, a hunter used ammo to shoot. Remember that? By the time I got to level 3, I had run out of arrows? bullets? and I didn't know where to get new ones, so I ended up going like, 5 levels without a bow... I am glad that in Cata the ammo system was thrown out the window and we no longer had to buy friggin ammo to just be able to shoot. 
The dungeon system: It used to take ages spamming trade to find a decent group, and, at least on my server, if you didn't have the achievement, it was pretty darn hard getting in anywhere. Sure, the queues are annoying and it's easy for people to just go "Screw that, I'm gone" and fake a dc etc, but meh, at least it's become easier to find a group. Edit: The dungeon finder came out in WOTLK! My memory fails me sometimes...

On a more personal note:

- Being part of a raid group for the first time: I became part of my old guild a little after the Cata launch. It was my first proper guild - I'd been an officer two years before that but I hadn't really been used to being in a social guild again. A month or two after I joined, a hunter spot opened up in the main raid group. I applied for it and got in. It was so much fun - we tried to do Blackwing Descent, and later Bastion of Twilight. We weren't really great or professional but we had a lot of fun and it was just a very tight-knit group. We raided with some intermissions - sometimes real life got in the way, but we did manage to steamroll through Firelands both normal and heroic, and afterwards Dragon Soul. Eventhough I am no longer in the raid group or the guild, I still have fond memories of those raiding days. Cataclysm was the first expansion in which I really learned to be a hunter and raider. 
- Doing achievements I never got to do on my mage: I raided Ulduar on my mage, but I never got to finish it because my guild broke up and I left the game shortly after that. So when I got to go Ulduar on my hunter again, I was incredibly pleased to be able to do the whole thing and finally see what the whole raid was about. It also got me my first dragon mount on June.
- Hunting Spirit Beasts: Gosh, the amount of time I spent camping those spirit beasts... of course spirit beasts aren't new to this expansion, but it was in Cata that I actively sought them out. Loque'nahak in particular was incredibly hard to get. I looked for him for days, and was so happy when I finally found him!
- Getting Time-Lost Protodrake on June: I was flying around Storm Peaks one afternoon - probably looking for Skoll - when I saw a dragon flying past me and my npc scan started to go crazy. I typed to my guildies whether anybody was interested in killing a rare dragon since I wasn't that bothered - I did not know about the existence of Time-Lost, or that it dropped a mount until my guildies told me. Bby then I was halfway to Sholazar. When I got back I couldn't find him initially - the nerves were driving me crazy - but after flying around a little, he eventually re-appeared. He still is my go-to mount.
- Ultimate Battleground with my guildies: My guild did this thing called Ultimate Battleground during the 5th anniversary guild celebrations which was basically a fight to the death in the arena in Blade's Edge with almost everyone from the guild fighting eachother all at the same time. I died quite quickly, but two of my guildies, a frostmage and a feral druid, fought it out for over an hour. It was epic. It was also pretty sweet that one of the GM's messaged our Guild Master that he was watching.

I am probably missing out a ton of other things, but those are the ones that come to mind at the moment ;-)

Will I miss Cata? Probably not. Cata has been fun while it lasted, but content wise, I am ready for something new.

This post has been inspired by this article from WoW Insider. Read it and let me know what you think - I'm curious to know how other players look back on this expansion. Are you going to miss Cataclysm, or can't Pandaria come soon enough for you? 


  1. I've had a great time in Cata! The making of the guild, progress through all the raids. I wish we had done more rated battlegrounds though. I'm playing as much as ever, I actually don't feel like I have enough time to get everything I want done; like making new alts. At the same time Cata can't come quickly enough! New shiny things... I definitely miss to be amazed by new things! Unfortunately one can't remove ones own knowledge and go back to being young and naive. :-)

  2. Thanks for sharing your story! I guess in the end it's all about what you make out of the game yourself and the personal experiences and memories :)

    I soo get what you mean by alts!! Some of my friends have 5 level 85s with max level gear... I have no idea how they do it all. The Pandaren might give you a good incentive to level a new alt?

  3. There are some really good things that I am glad will stay - the new lfr I think is good - yet they need to incorporate it better with scaling normal and heroic appropriately.

    There is much to look forward to as well! Yet I am personally sad to see the decline in 25man raiding (not to mention knowing I will never get to do a raid [that is current] with 39 others).

    ps. the dungeon finder came in WotLK

    1. Thanks for bringing that up about the dungeon finder Quel! Guess my memory had failed me ;-)

      I agree with you on the 25-man raids. It's a very epic feeling to do raids with so many people and it's a pity it's hardly been done anymore (at least on my server).

  4. Congrats on the Time Lost Protodrake! Hehe i can imagine how bad your nerves were, it was so lucky that you did not even have to camp it, and was just a spur of the moment thing! I have had similar luck, and only had to camp for half a day before i got lucky :)

    I didn't mind the Cata expansion either, however the main thing that has affected me is how the leveling process has changed. I am big on questing,and with the introduction of gaining xp from picking herbs/mining along with the overall xp nerf, i am out-leveling every zone before i get a chance to finish the quests! And usually the best quests are towards the end of a chain :(

  5. Thanks Jas :) And congrats on your Time-lost too!
    I hope the questing is better in Pandaria, from what I've heard you have to quest MUCH longer to get to 90 (I haven't tried it myself though). Hope it is all to your liking!