Month: May 2009

Sometimes, It Feels That Way

Hunter PvP.

Retadin PvP.

I know that’s an exaggeration, but it really does feel like that on my end sometimes.


Heroics < Battlegrounds

FC_NotEqual_41725_lgLast night, I was spending time with friends of mine I hadn’t seen in a few weeks.

We go to talking about the wars, the dangers, and the overall life in World of Warcraft.

One of my friends hates PvP, like another friend of mine does(Rilgon, I’m looking at you).  However, when I asked why, it was entirely about balance.  His first response was that it was too hard to get into, and that it’s required a lot more work to begin playing PvP.

Which, I said, was bogus.  Harder to get into?

I spent 3 weeks getting the PvE gear I have.  I’ve spent, easily, 7 000+ gold staying equipped for it.  I’ve been glued to my screen when there wasn’t anything more pressing than WoW to do.

1 week of PvP.  I have 524 resilience(which isn’t bad, or so I’m told) and a successful arena team.  I’ve spent 1 000 – 2 000 gold, max.  In all honesty, I found it so much easier than PvE.  PvE, you step into instance after instance hoping to get the drop you want.  For me, I was incredibly lucky.  I got a lot of loot very quickly due to an amazing amount of luck.  But most people don’t have that kind of loot luck.

In fact, the reason that all of my friends quit WoW was because raiding was “a full-time job”.  A fun one, maybe, but a job? How is that easier to get into? There are applications to get into the bigger guilds, and it has been pointed out that some of them are just pointless posturing.  Either way, you need a resume to play a game? That’s not easy to get into at all.

To keep this fair, we’re not going to mention that battlegrounds are available as early as level 10, that a PvP server is a constant PvP fight, and that the money cost is lower.  For one, when you hit 80, the higher end brackets are all available right there.  No need to gear yourself.

When you do the first couple fo battlegrounds, you will die.  Well, duh, who doesn’t? But even when you lose, you get something out of it.  You get honour.  More honour means more gear.  In PvE, a loss is a loss.  For me, it also means 13 gold every time I die, plus whatever amount of money it cost for ammunition and other buffs.  Plate armor people like Colemand have to pay even more.  The money you pick up from a Naxx can help with the repairs, but that’s only if you can clear it fast enough without a lot of deaths.  If you manage to wipe on Patchwerk 3-4 times, you just lost 50+ gold.

2 hours of Arena: 13 gold.  Tops.  2 Hours of Battlegrounds: 15 Gold, tops.

Secondly, you can do PvP whenever it’s convenient for you.  This makes it so much easier to get into! For a raiding guild, you have raiding times.  You must abide, or you can’t raid with them.  In addition, raids will take anywhere between 2-5 hours on raid nights.  PvP is whenever you feel like, for however long you feel like it, and you can leave at any point and time if there’s an emergency and no one will care.

Lastly, there’s Wintergrasp.  Waltz in, get boatloads of honour, and then walk out.  You get Tokens to buy more gear, and you get a chance to raid the Vault of Archavon.  Most importantly, Wintergrasp is the perfect place for the beginning PvPer: gear isn’t a factor.  The lowliest geared mage could walk into a tank or a turret and blast the everloving shit out of people.  What’s the equivalent in PvE? Ulduar? Heck no, because the vehicles have hp based on the quality of the items you are wearing.  So, gear is a requirement, and good gear at that.  Good gear is expensive, and you know the rest of the story.

It is my humble submission that, in fact…


…it is much easier to get into PvP!



Where Klinderas Is Selfish

Ball = DPS

Ball = DPS

I’ve been testing, feeling, experimenting… use any other words you deem appropriate, but I’ve been in a dilemma.

I’ve been torn between Survival and Beastmastery for PvE for the longest time.  For the past 3 weeks I’ve been dancing between the two trees.  Marksmanship just isn’t my cup of tea, so it’s not in on this.

It seemed that Survival did better DPS.  It STILL does.  But I don’t like it.  For almost half the effort, I can do more DPS in survival than I can in Beastmastery.  I never have to change Aspects for more then 3 seconds, and I don’t have to worry as hard about my pet if he gets hit by a Heigan wave.

But it’s just that: it’s too easy to do well with.  Survival is boring to me.  Complex Shot Priority System(SPS) my ass; I’ve got the damn thing down to a science.  Black Arrow, Serpent Sting, Explosive Shot, 3 Steady Shots, rinse and repeat steps 3+4 until Black Arrow is usable again.  Kill Shot whenever possible.

Aside from the occasional movement on my end, I don’t really do much else.  I actually fell asleep at my keyboard playing like this.

Beastmastery might be an easier SPS, but it is so much more fun for some weird reason.  Having to switch between Aspect of the Viper and Aspect of the Hawk creates interest.  Having to worry about the movement of my pet is much more of an issue, and this creates interest.  Having a pet the size of a school bus creates interest.

I have to work harder for lower DPS, but it’s more rewarding.  If my Ego is telling me I should be topping the meters, I’ll tell Mr. Ego to stuff it.  This isn’t about Ego: this is about being able to stay awake to play my damn game.

Hail to Beastmastery(even if it is sub-par at the moment)!

News From The Battlefield

We got their flag!.. for once.

We got their flag!.. for once.

I’m back from the war front!

Allies have died in droves, my gear has become tantamount to godlike, and my skill is legendary!..

Of course, that’s all from my point of view, and should be taken with a grain of salt.

Colemand says a handful, but I told him to stuff it.

In any case, I’ve got some initial reactions to PvP as a new hunter with no gear to a semi-seasoned hunter with gear.

-Hit or miss.  Either it rocks, or it sucks, and it’s usually never in between.

-If it is in between, it’s fun but ends in a disappointing manner for the most part.

-Retadins don’t stand a chance here.  Death Knights are also easy enough.

-Actually, about retadins: most are played badly.  The good ones still roflstomp me thanks to blessing of freedom completely destroying my ability to kite, and tranq shot doesn’t ever get rid of it.  EVER.

-Rogues can go die in a fire.

-Mages? Ha! Warlocks? HA! Don’t even talk about druids: Feral is easy for Fafnir to kite, and resto can’t deal damage to save their lives.  Boomkins, however, can prove tricky due to plate armor levels.

-About healers: I have no problem against any of them.  Priests are particularly weak to me for some weird reason.  They feel squishier than the rest.

-TANKS.  I CAN DRIVE TANKS! *rabid* Oh, and prot anything is easily kitable, speaking of tanks.

-Eye of the Storm still sucks major bunions.

-Alterac Valley sucks more than it used to, which is impressive to say the least.

-Strand of the Ancients is the best battleground for honour farming hands down.

-Warsong Gulch is still the worst.

-Also, Seaforium Charges.  Engineering needs more of those, Blizzard.  Please give me lockpicking bombs.

-Arathi Basin is fun, but it takes a long time.  Longer than Alterac Valley does.  That’s a sad, sad state of affairs where the 40 man raid fights are shorter than the 15 man skirmishes.  *cry*

-Beastmasters have to be really careful about their pets.  REALLY careful.  Pays off when the pet is a Chimera though, those things ROCK.  Survivalists do so much burst it makes pop rocks seem flat.  Marksmanship is like a jack in the box.  It waits a good 8 seconds, and then it hits like a truck.

-Chimeras own.  Fafnir can crit for 1 300 on occasion, and is hard to kill too.  It’s silly.

-What’s going on? West? Okay… oh I died.  Umm, okay, I’m alive.  Hey! They’re in our base! THEY MUST DIE! Wait huh? We lost? Oh nads.

-Okay, we’re attacking this time… OH! TANKS! TANKTANKTANKTANKTANK! *explosions* Roflstomped, biznatch.

-RP-GG.  ’nuff said.

-Please, it’s not a “Plaguecarrier”, it’s a meatwagon.  Durr.  Or it should be, anyway.

-And why does the Alliance get our demolishers and Plaguemachines? That’s ridiculous, those are ours, not yours.

-Honour BUCKET.  Holy cow is there a lot of honour to be had.

-Marks of Wintergrasp take too long to get.  Way too long.

-If you’re focused, you die.

-Retadins with Tenacity greater than 3 are invincible.  Same with Unholy Death knights.


-Would the following classes go die in a fire please: Holy Paladins, Retribution Paladins, Death Knights, and any combination of Rogues, Mages, and Priests.

-No but really? Rogue Mage Priest is stupid powerful.  Too many CC abilities to even stand a chance.

-Rogues are brutal.  Please nerf the noodle arms or expand our flare effect, please.

-Only way to survive a rogue is to be a beastmaster or have a very good healer.  I chose to be a Beastmaster and if possible find a healer.  But being a Beastmaster works for now.

-Getting the jump on the rogue presents fun times, however.  Dead in 5 seconds is fun!

-Getting jumped by a rogue means death.  2 v 1, and the rogue won.  Sap and Blind are an automatic 20 seconds of CC, 11 seconds minimum.  Gouge is another 4.5, and the rogue cna always reset the match.

-In short, rogues control the match.  Hunters are along for the ride.

-Learn to use Master’s Call or die.

-No really, it’s not useless.  USE IT.


-Same goes for your traps: make sure you use them every cooldown.

-Before even walking into an arena, have the 4 piece PvP set, an anti-CC trinket, and 1 other piece of PvP gear.  If you don’t, you will die faster than you aready will even if you had that all.

-Keep your hit rating at around 168 to stay at the hit cap of 5%, or you will fail.  Badly.

-I don’t care, but Orgrimmar arena ROCKS.  Learn to use the terrain, even if it does seems random.  No strategy in the RNG? Stop complaining! Control only makes stuff predictable: the unpredictable and how you handle it is what makes a good PvPer.

-Dalaran Sewers are… interesting.  Going fwoosh is smartest for hunters since it allows you to check for humanoids before being able to be killed, and then being placed somewhere advantageous.

-Nagrand is still the most love/hate relationship arena in my books.

I’m a total noob, and need practice.  More later.

This Week In WoW


It's the only animal he refuses to eat. Odd.

This is why Gnome hunters do not exist.

This is why Gnome hunters do not exist.

Don't mess with the trellis.

Don't mess with the trellis.

Blood Elf + Shaman = Way too cool for this game.

Blood Elf + Shaman = Way too cool for this game.

The loot karma continues!

The loot karma continues!

Watch out! It's Klin and anti-Klin!

Watch out! It's Klin and anti-Klin!

Number of Horde Vehicles = H4X.

Number of Horde Vehicles = H4X.

Thanks go to Eldadres of Smolderthorn for the last 2 pictures!

Colemand Has A Few Words

And now, your host, COLEMAND!

And now, your host, COLEMAND!


In response to Klinderas’ overwhelming, music induced crying, I decided it was finally time to break it to him.

Klinderas, you are a total wuss.

Thank you.

It is pretty, though.

In any case, I have been asked some questions in my recent travels.  I was traveling north from Nagrand, and I came across a few people, and they asked me the following.

Why are you leaving us when there are so many things left to do?
Unfortunately, stalwart protectors of Nagrand, your quests are trivial and no longer satisfy my need for experience.  At this point, slaying the massive army of Ogres that pose impending doom to your town is not in my best interest, as it’s really way too easy.


Why is Garrosh so mopey?
It’s all Klin’s fault.  Apparently, Klinderas had a dancing competition against him and won.  This has left Garrosh bitter and self-loathing.

When I came to Nagrand, he immediately burst into tears, and ran to his hut saying something about “Not again! Not the gyrating hips!”

Either way, I really don’t want to know.

Do you know the pied piper?

Go away.

How do Ethereals taste?
Now, this is tricky.  When ethereals die, they go poof.  Poof means that they don’t have flesh, and it’s really hard to “eat” an ethereal.

However, they do leave a fine powder coating on the inside on their armor.  You can scrape off the coating, and use it as a condiment.  It’s pretty much pure arcane energy, so it tastes electric and sweet at the same time.

Apply on warlocks liberally.  With prejudice.

Until next time everyone, enjoy your lives.  Not that they really matter if you know the right people.

Musicwatch: Love Theme, Guns of Patriots

One word: Gorgeous

One word: Gorgeous

This is a special edition of Moviewatch: this week, we bring you music instead of a movie.


Art is, in my humble opinion, the closest thing to magic on this planet.  It’s the only thing that requires only an imagination to understand and to feel on a level that influences minds, and changes the way you think.  A painting can inspire you.  A book can lighten your mood.  A song can keep you going despite your limits.

Music is, in my opinion, also the most influential and powerful of the arts.  Where literature can make you cry and laugh, and visual arts can make you do the same, music does it differently.  Because of how ambiguous music is, and because of the lack of language barriers in most music, it can affect everyone.  In addition, it relies on the emotions and experiences of the listener: it sounds sad because it reminds you of something sad in your life.  It relies on you, not as much on the text.

The love theme from Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of Patriots is one of the most beautiful things I have heard.  It’s in a language I don’t understand and I still feel the sadness and agony of loss this person is singing of.

It made me cry, and I’m not afraid to admit it.

Ladies and gents, I present to you this special moviewatch…

Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots – Love Theme!

Set Up

Klinderas had been tracking this human for weeks.  

This, scraggly, scruffy, scarred excuse for a human was a cultist, one of the Damned.  Even after the third great war the Cult of the Damned was still a threat, trying to spread corruption within human lands.

This particular cultist, named Gavren according to his “sources”, had information Klinderas needed.  For instance, who is the necromancer in charge of the western plaguelands, and where could he find him.

Klinderas had left Silvermoon that day when Eldadres spoke to him.  He left and rode south towards the Ghostlands, through to the Eastern plaguelands.  He rested at Light’s Hope chapel for a day.  A Captain spoke to him about a battle taking place to the east, where hundreds of death knights and thousands of lesser undead assault the Scarlet Crusade daily.  

Klinderas explained that he wasn’t here to bolster their forces, but to stop a rising force of a similar kind shoring up on the Western plaguelands.  The Captain explained to Klinderas where he could find members of the Cult of the Damned, for if anyone could find a necromancer, it would be another member of the cult.

  Klinderas thanked the captain, and followed the lead.

Klinderas stalked and hunted members who knew of a plot to the west.  For every cultist who gave Klinderas information, three were silent.  After 2 weeks of stalking, hunting, and killing, Klinderas finally found out who the right hand man to the Necromancer was, and where he was.  None would tell him or could tell him of the man himself, but the second-in-command surely would.

Klinderas had been tracking this human for weeks.  Through Stormwind, no less.  Klinderas masked his smell, hid his ears, and covered his eyes.  His cloak constantly obscured every identifying feature of him, and he purposefully smeared dirt on his face to seem less elvish.  So far, it worked.  Humans are stupid creatures sometimes.

Gavren had been walking through a main street close to the harbour for the better part of the day.  Klinderas had noticed he had done the same walk, every day, for the past three days.  Out of his home, to the marketplace, to the pub, then back to his home.  Every time, he sits alone, eats alone, and does everything alone.  This was, so far, turning out to be a big waste of time, and he was getting frustrated as he couldn’t do anything to the man until he did something different from this protective routine.

Suddenly, the man took a left turn down a dark alley, and Klinderas was immediately alert.  Knowing that this was probably a means of seeing is anyone was following, Klinderas looked at his companion, Radix.  Radix’s stunning red fur was sleek and fine, contrasted by the gold fur along his back and the edges of his face, which was long and feral.  Simply by looking at one another, Radix understood exactly who their prey was, and what he had to do.  Radix instantly disappeared into the crowd, and followed the man down the alley.  

Klinderas had his job to do as well.

He turned to the building to the left, ran at it, and jumped on the window sill.  The building was made of uneven stone, which allowed for a great deal of handholds and footholds.  Klinderas scaled the building with all the speed and grace of a professional acrobat, the aspect of the monkey flowing through him.  He flipped himself up onto a beam, swung to a pole and, perching on the pole like a falcon, jumped off of it like jumping off a spring board.  He did a neat front flip, and was lost behind the rooftops.

The living are so… weak.  Frail.  Pitiful.

I discarded the husk of another Scarlet civilian, his lifeless body crumpling into a bloody, gory heap next to so many others I executed.  My Saronite armor was covered in gore and soaked in blood, not mine.  I didn’t care.

Who could care about something so fragile? So pointless? My very existence is a mockery of life.

I can’t even breathe.  My blood doesn’t flow anymore.  Yet here I am, standing in my master’s service, in unlife.  Simply by existing, I shatter the beliefs of those weakling paladins and their followers.  For this, I am not only my master’s chosen weapon of death and destruction, I am a symbol of His power, his strength, and his way.

I was wounded in the last fight, having had my jaw knocked loose and my skin ripped off my bones in a number of places.  I reattached the jawbone, the thick snap it created pierced the darkness, and broke the silence heard only after a battle.

I knelt down next to the heap of corpses next to me, took my hand, and punched it through the ribcage of the nearest corpse.  There was almost no blood spray, since most of the blood had leaked out when I had gutted the man’s throat.  Even when I removed my fist full of flesh, there wasn’t more than a trickle from the man’s chest.  It was obvious his heart had stopped beating before he hit the ground.

I took the flesh, and put it in my mouth.  Every chew, every bite, regenerated more unholy flesh; this was the master’s magic at work.  I take what was once theirs, and add it to my own.

They’re not going to be using it anyway.

I had about half finished this particular wretch when a geist scampered behind me, and stopped.

“Death Knight… Cole… mand…”

Geists were irritating.  Just a little.  You’d think they could be re-animated with a voice that doesn’t start-stop constantly.

“What do you want, geist? Your presence irritates me.”

The geist didn’t care.  Much like myself, it only served the master, and feared nothing else.

“You go… Acheron… speak… Lich… King.”

At least they didn’t beat around the bush.

“Tell the Master that I live to serve.  Now screw off.”

The geist didn’t hesitate, and slid into the shadows and darkness of the night.  There was no light tonight: the smoke and dust of battle obscured the stars and extinguished the light of the moon.  Not that it mattered: when you are made of shadow and darkness, you can see as well at night as you can in the day.

When I had finished eating the cadaver, I stood up and let unholy energy flow through me.  Every fiber of my being crawled with unholy power, the energies of death and rot.  When used properly, however, one could turn death and rot into shadow and darkness.  With shadow and darkness, one could create a portal to a bastion of shadow and darkness.  A bastion like Acheron.

  Instant doorway, one way please.

When the energies reached their peak, I let them out of my body, and forced them to coalesce into a stable doorway into Acheron.  Now for the hard part: walking through.  

I never liked walking through these doorways.  They made my stomach lurch, spin, and it always caused me to be wobbly legged.  It’s like stepping on a giant wheel, then running down a hill on it, losing control, spinning a few times around the wheel, then finally landing at your destination.

When I stepped from the portal, I smashed into another death knight trainee.

“Watch where you step, Cole.  It could very well be your last.”

Now this is a person I hated more than that stupid doorway.  I knew him only as Carver, and he was a tool.

I grinned.  “Hello, Carver.  Glad to see you’re still so cheery.”

“You can go to hell, Colemand.  You’re lucky to still be existing.  I could kill you right now.  Right now.  After that mistake, I should.” he frothed.

His elven features struck me as odd, but only because I had never seen a Night Elf before I met this prick.  Carver’s purple skin was blemished in many places by misshapen tattoos and sores where his undeath had taken root.  His short, barbaric hair had been made to form a mohawk, and it must have been cut by his own blade.  It was uneven enough to make the Alterac Mountains seem plain.

“After what? I saw nothing, Carver.  You’re too tense.  You should sit back and relax, let the proper knights do their job.”

“I will kill you Colemand.  Your death will bring me glory, and He will see me as his best knight.”

“Touchy, aren’t we?”

“I will kill you!” He was practically foaming at the mouth.

“Happy entrails, Carver.  Try not to rip out your hair again.”

I left him there, him cursing and spitting and going foamy at the mouth while I walked into the transporter.  He was always such a joy to be around.

I reached the upper level of the ziggurat, and there he was.  Arthas Menethil, ruler of the damned, traitor king of Lordaeron, warlord of the frozen wastes, and my liege.  He stood looking out over his vast legions of undead, assaulting the human town a few miles away.  The wind up here was cold and blew angrily, but his cloak moved on it’s own whim in a slow, erie fashion.  The wind carried the sounds of battle, the screams of dying humans a constant reminder of His power.

“What does my liege command?”

He turned slowly to face me.  His armor was silver, but black at the same time.  It absorbed all light around it, causing the rest of the area around him to seem darker by comparison.  His blade, Frostmourne, alos known as Muradin’s bane, glowed with a fiery blue malevolence; each sharp edge wreathed in unholy flame.  His helmet showed none of his face, save for two eternally glowing blue eyes.  His very frame was massive, and every step the King took up the same amount of space as three fully grown men.

“Colemand, your service has been noticed.  You have killed and murdered and shown these worthless humans the strength of the Scourge, and taught them fear.”

“Yes my liege.  My life is yours to spend, my liege.”  Kneeling at this point was almost involuntary.  I really hate those doorways.

“Your strengths are no longer needed here.”

I was shocked.  No longer needed? I was one of the best knights here! I could sow death, terror, and even bacon!

Don’t ask, I get bored sometimes, and there’s a lot of meat on a battlefield.

“My lord…”

“Silence.  Your life is mine to spend, not yours.  You go to the western plaguelands, and you will do this now.  You will serve one of my lieutenants, a powerful necromancer.  He will explain more.  Serve him or die.”

“Yes, my liege.  My life is yours to spend.”

I was pissed.  The eastern plaguelands? There’s nothing left there.  At least, nothing fun.

“Leave.  Your business is done here.  You ride for Andorhal immediately.”

“At once, my lord.”

Andorhal.  Why do I know that name?

I made my way to the ground, and upon getting to the border of the western plaguelands I stopped and began to focus.  Unlike doorways, summoning my steed wasn’t nausea inducing.  A snap of my fingers and there it was.

I stole, killed, and re-animated this horse myself.  I never liked it though, it was too… on fire.  Its black skin was contrasted by the blue flames on its hooves, in its eyes, and its mane.  It was as if the horse was being burned alive.  The worst part was if you forgot to saddle the beast: fire and chafing are not good things to have at once.

I saddled the beast, and mounted it.  I looked west, and thought for a minute.  Andhorhal… have I been there before? I can’t have been, but I have a feeling that I should know better.

This was no time for thoughts, however.  This was time to ride.  No need for water, food, or rest would see me there in two days.

Two days.

Two days…

What’s In A Piece Of Loot?


Not a purple.

I was waltzing around Silvermoon a few days ago, doing my usual rounds.  Auction houses, testing, engineering, doing some battlegrounds, and waiting for a heroic or two.

No, this is not a post indicating that someone sucked.  Just in advance.

Some people starting talking in guild chat about how they were doing and doing the usual ego inflation thing that most people do at some point(I know I certainly do!) when they started talking about gear.  Gear that they’ve gotten, earned, and played hard for.  

I piped up, and decided to show off some gear of my own: I decided to show off my tier 8.5 Conqueror’s Pants of Pwning.  Bad idea.

“Got those off of Emalon?” was the response.

“I did.  Lucky roll.” was my reply.

Laughing ensued.  Why? Well, let’s all be clear: Emalon is, despite being harder and more demanding on your DPS than Archavon, still an oversized, overstuffed loot pinata.  Anybody can walk in and take the gear, so long as your DPS isn’t completely stupid.

So why didn’t I show off my Envoy of Mortality, or any of my other gear I was so proud of? Because gear means nothing, compared to what it used to mean.

For a guy who began playing in the Burning Crusade, I’m really used to gear being an indicator of skill.  Having the old Gronstalker gear would immediately tell you that hunter knew what he was doing in PvE.  Brutal Gladiator gear was a sign of near omnipotence in PvP, and were to be feared and respected.  I know it was easier to get this gear in TBC than what it was to get the same level of gear in Vanilla, but it still mattered.

Gear was an indicator of how good you were, and every epic you equipped was a badge of honour to be polished and cherished.  That was something you could flash and link to people and they’d think you were hot stuff.  

When Wrath came out, gear lost meaning in the same sense.  The simplicity of the content had people complaining and leaving the game, and anybody who hit 80 and had some basic dungeon blues could find a pugged Naxx and go and have fun.  There’s nothing wrong with this, since the hard-mode fights provided the challenge most people were looking for; but hard-mode fights don’t provide gear.  They provide mounts and titles, but nothing else substantial.  You can turn off names, and you can turn off titles.  You can try to show off your mount, but you can’t because all the major cities don’t allow for flying mounts(with Shatrath being the only exception, but it’s deserted).  Besides, so what if you have a proto-drake? My gyrocopter goes just as fast the best of them, so there’s no real or practical advantage to working that hard.

Gear is easy enough to get, too.  3 days after hitting 80, I started raiding.  A few weeks later, I have some really good gear.  Does it mean I’m good? Not really.  It means that I have good loot rolls.  I do have some achievements, and I’d like to think I’m a good hunter; but can I show it off easily? Can people tell I’m a good hunter just by looking at me? I argue that no, you can’t.  Even if I got the mounts and the titles, even if I got everything the titles give me, someone else who has been able to pug the stuff I’ve done could get the same gear, minus the title and mount. Otherwise, we’d be exactly the same.

This is especially true for PvP, when you can earn badges to earn PvP gear, or raid Ema and Archie.  It’s never been easier to get your PvP groove started, but it makes it that much harder to tell who knows what they are doing.

I like that Blizzard has made the game more accessible.  I like that more people can enjoy an endgame which, until recently, had been very hard to get to.  I think it’s a good idea to make the normal mode fights easier than some would like, and make the challenging stuff an option for those who play this game for the harder stuff.  

What I don’t like is the fact that the hard modes are only that: a harder fight with minor reward.  I walk through Dalaran, and I can’t tell the difference between the good, the bad, and the ugly.  They all look the same until you play with them.

Maybe that’s the idea? Who knows.

Either way, its an interesting new world we play in when the gear we get isn’t a marker of player skill, and where the only markers of said skill are easily ignorable.