Thursday, June 25, 2009

Mouse Vs. Keyboard – 2 peripherals enter, 1 peripheral leaves.


I’ve been trying to get Francois and Steve to try using their mice for turning and movement, instead of just using it to click attacks. Why? I believe it’s far superior to have your right hand control your movement, and you’re already used to using your left hand for typing, why not use it to hit attack spells?

This isn’t something I developed while playing WoW, I’ve used this strategy for Half-life, Counter-Strike (when it was still a mod), Diablo 1, Diablo 2……and basically any computer game I’ve ever had the option of changing the command keys on.

Francois’ first toon is a druid, and having played druids, I concede that you could probably do fine with WASD for movement, and just clicking through your attacks. You might miss an attack, but you really don’t need all that many keys for your attacks.

In contrast is…….every other character class out there. Hunters, Mages, Warlocks, Shamans, Paladins, Warriors, Rogues, Death Knights, and …..Priests. Ok, ok, I haven’t played a Priest past 30, and my highest Druid is 35, but they haven’t racked up enough skills at this point to really NEED the whole keyboard like the other toons do.

It seems like a lot of people fall into 1 of 2 categories.
1) Mouse for looking around, keyboard for movement with the arrow keys, and either clicking attacks or using the number keys.
2) Mouse for looking around, WASD for movement, clicking or using Z,X,C, Alt, Ctrl, and maybe the number keys as well.

I don’t fit into any of that. I use my mouse purely for movement AND looking around (very handy to do 360 spins of the environment on a PvP server), with only the right click button to start auto-attack, and either press both keys to run, or a button on the side of the mouse.

The keyboard is where everything else is. My first toon Bloodshrike is a hunter, and I quickly found my action bars filling up with all the new skills he was learning. And to me, they all seemed pretty useful, so I wanted instant access to most of them, without having to look at them in my action bar, and then click them when needed. I don’t understand how people with chance on hit/dodge/block/parry abilities like Rogues and Warriors can manage to click Riposte, Overpower/Revenge with the narrow window of time that’s offered. I don’t have to look at the action bars during a fight, all my attention is focused on my opponent or mob.

I use A-G for my main attacks, with usually some cast sequence or Alt or Ctrl modified macros thrown in. Space Bar is jump, Z-B are my less used spells, with V and B being my “Oh Shit” or melee hot buttons. Q + W up top are usually my potion keys, or in the case of my Warriors, W is always Charge. I don’t PvP much, even though I’m on PvP servers, but I just figured out that I could have E be Strafe left, and R be Strafe right.
1-6 are the last set of keys that I press.

Since most of my toons are engineers, 1 and 2 are usually bombs or target dummies. 3-5 is up for grabs, or for Warriors, who have 3 different Stance bars, I’ll have 4 set for Shoot, since all Stances can use it. 6 is usually Blink for mages, or the Gnomish Harm Prevention Belt or Nigh-Invulnerability belt for those toons that can wear it. 7 is ALWAYS my mount button. Since I use an ergonomic keyboard, it’s still pretty comfortable for my index finger to hit it. Everything else on my action bars (usually I have 2 stacked above my XP bar, using CTMod) is clickable.

So, in total, I have 20+ keys/spells that are very easy to reach and use, with more being available with Ctrl and Alt modifier macros.
Anal-retentive? Sure. Handy? Very much so. Hmmm, maybe I’ll do a series of posts for what I’m using for each character class, using my highest level of each of those classes.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Weapon Skills


Hey, just a quick little thought for those interested in achievements. One easy way of leveling weapons skills is to always switch up your weapons while leveling. .

Every 4 levels or so, peruse the auction house for a weapon that you have the lowest skill in, and start using that one. Buy a rare one if you can, so the weapon skill AP modifier won't be as apparent.

Maximizing low level quests for fun and profit.....well, maybe not fun, but definitely profit


Production Line Assembly of Alliance-Only Quest Reward Recipes.

My previous post about ez gold – which we will expand upon.
Post- Spider Kabobs

From Step Two, you’re logged into your throwaway Night Elf, level one. This time, run around and do some quests until you get to at least level 3. Then, go get your 625 XP by getting the Kaldorei recipe in Dolanaar, and continue on to Darnassus. Fly over to Darkshore, and set your hearthstone in Auberdine.

Take the boat at the very end of the pier to get to Azuremyst Isle, You should be pretty close to level 4 by now, with the XP bonus from discovering different areas. If you’re not, kill Moongraze Stags to the south and east of Azure Watch to get the 6 needed Moongraze Stag Tenderloins needed for “The Great Moongraze Hunt.”

Send your recipes to your bank alt, or your Booty Bay transfer character, and stop for a second.

Do you want to spend a few more hours and get three more Ally recipes? They don’t sell as well as the cooking recipes, but they will sell to completionists. I wouldn’t try it until you’ve built up either a stockpile of Copper Ore/Bars (the rough stone can usually be bought anytime for 20 silver a stack), or the necessary items by scanning the AH religiously by typing “copper” and clicking on Weapons, and then Armor.

So, you decided to go for the recipes, you masochist you. Hit your hearthstone to zoom back to Auberdine in Darkshore, then run down the dock and take the boat on the left, going to Stormwind. Run FIRST to the Windrider Master to get the flight point, then go to Dwarven District to take the Tram to Ironforge. Coming south from Tinker Town, go directly to the Windrider to pick up the flight point.

Pick up Blacksmithing and mining, then go pick up 100-160 rough stones from the AH, or have an alt send you them, along with the copper weapons and armor, or the copper and mats to make them. However, you don’t learn the recipe for the Heavy Copper Maul till 65, and the Runed Copper Belt isn’t learned until 70, so its up to you how you want to play it.

Ally Blacksmithing Quests: Get to level 60 Blacksmithing, using only rough stones. Do about 35 rough sharpening stones first, then switch to rough grinding stones. Once you hit 60, both of the BS quests will be ready to pick up at Tormus Deepforge, right at the Great Anvil in Ironforge. The quests are detailed at the end of the post.

If you like, you can drop blacksmithing, and pick up skinning, because you’ve already accepted the quests. Now, it’s time to run to Loch Modan. Make sure you have the 6 copper belts and 6 axes in your inventory, because you’ll turn in the quest before you come to a mailbox. With the mauls and runed belts, keep them in the mail system, so you can get them out of the mail once you get to Redridge.

Follow the path, and feel free to zig-zag a bit if you see a copper node or a rabbit you want to skin. You might as well make some gold while doing this.
Go thru the Southern Entrance to Loch Modan, and turn in the Supplying the Front quest in the Valley of Kings (the round building ahead of you as you come down the path). Now continue North up the path until you get to Thelsamar, then take the gryphon and fly back to Stormwind (you DID remember to get the flightpoints for both Ironforge and SW, right?)

Once you land in SW, just jump into the water below. Follow the path to the east towards Redridge Mountains, and I’d advise walking a little to the right of the path (south) so you can spot the copper nodes that are on the edges of the hills. Try to kill enough mobs along the way so you’re about 1100 XP under dinging level 8, as you’ll need that level for the leatherworking quest.

Once you get to Redridge Mountains, hang a hard left. There’s a little path up thru the mountains that can actually let you get to Lakeshire unharmed, if the mobs are far enough away. If not, just rez at the spirit healer, and swim across the lake to the mailbox at the inn. Get your mauls and belts from the mailbox, turn them in at the eastern edge of town, and you’ve gotten the Ironforge Breastplate recipe! You should be level 8 by now, so hit your hearthstone to zone back to Auberdine.

Take the grypon back to Darnassus, drop mining, and pick up leatherworking. Once you hit level 70 LW, Lotherias will have a “!” over her head, and you’ll have the items already in your inventory. Turn in the quest, send the excess mats and the recipes to your alt to sell off or give to a friend, and never, ever, EVER do that again. It takes way to long, for too little gain.

Definitely take advantage of the Kaldorei recipe being easy to farm, and if you have the time, or if you have a mage friend, have them come to Dolanaar and have them port you to Exodar after you’ve gotten to level 4 (do it with a few of these throwaway toons at a time, so it’s worth their time and yours.

In conclusion, here’s the mat cost and expected sell price of these recipes.

Recipe: Kaldorei Spider Kabob -- 1-20 silver if you buy the mats off the AH, sell on the neutral or Horde AH for 250-350 gold
Recipe: Roasted Moongraze Tenderloin – 0 mat cost. Seriously, there’s a 100% drop on the meat, so you might as well farm it. Sells for 250-350 on NAH or Horde AH.
Recipe: Tasty Lion Steak – 50 silver to 20 gold on the Ally AH. As long as it’s not too expensive, buy it every time you see it on there. Horde will snap it up. 250-350g

The most I’ve ever gotten for the BS or LW recipes on Horde side was about 200 gold, but usually they sell for around 100-150.

For the quest Supplying_the_Front, you’ll need 6 Copper Axes and 6 Copper Chain Belts. For the Axes, that means 36 Copper Bars, 12 Linen Cloth, and 6 Weak Flux. For the Belts, that’s 36 Copper Bars.
Total: 72 Copper Bars, 12 Linen Cloth, 6 Weak Flux.
Reward: Plans:_Heavy_Copper_Longsword

For the quest Gearing_Redridge, you’ll need 4 Runed Copper Belts (40 Copper Bars), and 4 Heavy Copper Maul (48 Copper Bar, 8 Weak Flux, 8 Light Leather)
Total: 88 Copper Bars, 8 Weak Flux, 8 Light Leather.
Reward: Plans: Ironforge_Breastplate

Leatherworking Quest: try using this guide or whatever gets you to 70.
For the quest Moonglow_Vest, you’ll need to get to level 8, and level Leatherworking to 70, plus turn in 1 Embossed Leather Gloves (2 Coarse Thread, 3 Light Leather) , 5 Embossed Leather Boots (25 Coarse Thread, 40 Light Leather), and 5 Embossed Leather Cloaks (10 Coarse Thread, 25 Light Leather). Follow the above guide to 59 (probably about 100 Light Leather worth), then make the required quest items from there.
Total: 168+ Light Leather, 37 Coarse Thread.
Reward: Moonglow_Vest