Finally Got Him!

From the moment I was able to tame exotic pets, I had one thing in mind: a corehound. Those slobbering, two headed beasties were too cool to resist. The only one not in a dungeon was in Shadowmoon Valley.  For weeks now, I’ve gone there one or twice  for each of those weeks to tame the damn thing with no luck.

Unless you consider dying in a puddle of acid luck, which I don’t. It seemed everytime I got close, he’d knock me back, disrupting the training process and I’d have to start over and hope it worked before I died. I can’t even begin to count the number of times I’ve tried. How much gold I’ve spent in repairing equipment as a result of my bulleaded, yet, predetermined death.  Probably enough to get my cold weather flying training, most likely. 

Since I was home sick today, I decided to try again. I mentioned this in guild chat, and made some comment about hoping he doesn’t knock me back yet again.  And then the miracl came.

“Use frost trap, freeze ’em in place.” Someone said.  I’d never felt so dumb in my life. Well, okay I have, but not in a long time. At least three days, maybe two.  Even though I’m a hunter and I’ve trained in traps, I’ve never really used them. Bobo, Detta or the rhino I picked up did well enough, I didn’t need them. I rarely run instances-yet-where they can be used effectively, so it never dawned on me. 

I am he who the name huntard was destined for. 

I go down to Shadowmoon Valley, find my prey, spring the trap and voila! Spanky is mine!

What? what’s wrong with naming a green, two headed drooling monster Spanky?

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Things That Made Me Smile This Year

Everyone has their best of lists, favorites lists, etc, and frankly I haven’t played enough games or seen enough movies to make a 10 best list; instead this is a buffet (since no one says smorgrasbord anymore) of things that made me smile.

13th Star – Fish

This got a deluxe early release in September of last year, but didn’t have its US release until February of this year, so I’m putting it in. A remerkable album, filled with passion, soul and some cowbell on a couple of tracks. At a lean 55 minutes over 10 tracks, Fish creates some of his best music and insightful lyrics ever. Pretty damn impressive given his solo work and time with Marillion. In light of recent events he blogged about with his throat problems, it’s only all the more impressive.

The Dark Knight

One of the few movies I saw this year-at an IMAX theater no less, it lost none of its excitement or thrills for me as I watched it again on DVD. With such strong performances from Heath Ledger and Gary Oldman, Batman as played by Christian Bale, is overshadowed. The action is nonstop, the music is some of the best I’ve heard in a long time, and well, it had me on the edge of my seat for the whole movie.

SuperBad

Yes, I know this is a summer movie from ’07 but I only saw it this year. Its go for broke raunchiness is tempered by an ending that had me a bit choked up. Michael Cera, a favorite from Arrested Development, Cera has the comedic acting chops to be around for a long, long time.

Secret Millionaire

This one is a bit of a guilty pleasure. Fox’s new reality show, allows a millionaire to pose as someone poor in order to look for people to help. It’s about as shallow and contrived as one can get, but I swear, when they break the checks out at the end, the look on people’s faces is worth the 50 minutes of cringe inducing moments.

World of Warcraft/Wrath of the Lich King

Anyone who’s read my blog,  by now knows my love (indeed obsession, perhaps), for the game. It’s brought me hours of joy, diversion and excitement in ways I could have never imagined. Oh, I know it’s only a video game, but there’s something that happens once you log in…you lose yourself in it the way you do in a great novel or movie. And as much as I loved WoW when I first started playing in April, I have come to adore it even more with the expansion. Brilliant game.

Rusty, Cussedness, ETT

And most everyone else who details the exploits of the nitwits. If I listed everyone I’d have a list as long as Nikita’s problems, so don’t feel excluded.

Death in Common

I still have a smile from this one. The first published appearance of my work as a writer. What’s not to smile about?

Odetta

And finally no list of things which make me smile would be complete without my cat Odetta. She keeps me going, and is the only anchor I sometimes feel I’ve got to this life. For almost 5 years now, this furry little friend has been my constant companion, and life wouldn’t be the same without her.

 

So, now you know what made me smile this year,  what about you? What made you smile this year?

Flying Carpets, Dwarves Brains and Murloc Suits

I’ve reached 72, almost 73, and I’ve never had so much fun in WoW as I have with this Lich King expansion. In the last 3 weeks, I’ve ridden on a flying carpet; been ejected out of a tank after mowing down some undead; killed some dwarves and then sawed open their heads to collect their brains and donned a murloc suit, Here are some pics from recent adventures. For some reason wordpress won’t let me make a gallery, so I have to upload each pic one by one, so excuse the odd layout.

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It’s good to be a death Knight

While playing my death knight, I got to become the persona of evil. I slaughtered soldiers, civilians, peasants and priests. I’ve shot a cannon at a shore full of soldiers with their own weaponry. I’ve spoken with the lich king and gotten some nifty gear. I’ve killed innocent prisoners, and rode a frost wyrvern as I set fire to a town. 

The quests for the death knight raise the bar for any type of game, MMO or otherwise. Had I not added him to my guild already, I’d start another one just to go through them again. 

And, I’m happy to report, the only major glitch I’ve come across was the long, long queue to get in the game. There was little lag, only one disconnect and some good teamwork. Given all the problems that were experiences over the past few weeks, this comes as a relief. I’ve got some new screenshots I’ll post later tonight or in the morning, as I’m in another damn queue.

Feeling the Wrath

Okay, so for the first time in decades, I felt like a little kid on Christmas morning, waiting for Mom and Dad to wake up. I woke up far earlier than was probably healthy, and hopped the bus to go over to Target to get my copy of Wrath of the Lich King. Aside from a woman who offered to show me her breasts for a dollar (I declined, as she would have had to roll her pant legs up to do so, and besides she said that to everyone in the seats around me)the trip was uneventful. I picked up my copy, and was surprised to see a few others also waiting for the store to open and grab their copy. 

It’s now installing, and once that finishes and gets patched, I’ll dlve in and play a Death Knight. I’ll update later on and share my experiences.

Edited to add a pic of myself and the Lich King. My Death Knight is Khonstantine.

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Orgrimmar attacked, then mail disappears

In what can’t be considered a good sign, Blizzard’s weekly maintenance yesterday, scheduled until 11 AM PST, was extended until 8PM PST. Mail for the last 15 days went missing, PVP gear was being given away, there were some glitches on different classes, all one day before the expansion comes out. 

I’m a new wow player, started back in April of this year, so I wasn’t around for the first expansion. I have heard from fellow guild members who were there for TBC release, all the problems that occurred. It was ugly. Servers up and down, lag, queues…much like it’s been the past few weeks. I’ve gotten very frustrated, as I’m trying to hit 68 asap to get to Northrend, and already at 64. Yet what would have made me say screw it in other games, one thing keeps me going.

Blizzard knows how to tell a story. when I made a weekly run to Orgrimmar to AH some items, the city was under attack by ice dragons and abominations. All the major Horde leaders were in town; and in some inspired fanboy service, Thrall and Garrosh Hellscream were fighting in an Arena. for those of us who have played WC since the first game, seeing lore unfold before your eyes is an inspiring, and goose bump raising moment. 

So in spite of not being able to log on at all yesterday, I’m eager to see what happens next. Lich King gets a midnight release tonight, and while I won’t be at one, I’ll be up first thing in the morning banging on a box store door for my death knight.

Good thing I took the day off.