Life Begins At 80!

So, you’ve been playing World of Warcraft.  You’ve succesfully managed to quest and grind your way up to the game’s current level limit of 80. Congratulations are in order, but in reality you’ve only just started the game. It’s okay though, I’m going to guide you through what the next steps are to help you on your way to becoming an essential guild or party member.

Raiding; 5 man, 10 man, 25 man, this will be your life for the forseeable future, until the Cataclysm addon is released. You can quite happily join random 5 man heroic dungeons all day, every day, there is no limit on how many you can do.  When you’re completing these dungeons you will obtain something better than the loot that drops inside, they are called triumph emblems.

These emblems can be redeemed for class specific equipment from vendors.  So, if you’re tanking, you can pick up equipment with strength and more stamina on it.  If you’re going DPS mele you can pick up the strength stacked items with the lesser stamina, and so on. These items are referred to as Tier 9 items (I don’t know why and I’m not able to find an explanation that is consistent).

Sounds pretty straightforward.  You now grind dungeons instead of quests to get these emblems, you get better gear.  Simple?  Possibly but with the release of the litch king there was also a new Tier of equipment released – funnily enough called Tier 10 – which you can only get through obtaining frost emblems (starting to sound familiar?).  You get frost emblems by finishing a random dungeon a day and by defeating the bosses in the Ice Crown Citadel dungeon instance.

Here’s the problem.  In order to get into a 10 man or 25 man run of the Ice Crown Citadel you need to have a decent gearscore.  Gearscore is a real pain in the arse.  Each item you gain through grinding the dungeon has a score on it and the items move up in value the harder they are to gather.  The problem is that gearscore is no indication of a player’s ability to play, it just says that they’ve been around for a while and have probably managed to sneak into some larger public raiding groups.

So, we have tier equpiment, emblem gathering and gearscore and, the main point of it all, achievements.  This is the only game that I know of where achievements really matter.  When you’re trying to join a public group (pugs as they are referred to) you’ll be asked to link your gearscore and your achievements.  This means that the raid leader wants to know that you’ve succesfully completed that instance previously before you can be allowed to take part in the group.  It’s a proper catch 22 – you can’t take part until you have completed it, you can’t complete it until you take part.

The gearscore value is highlighted on this image

So, in order to get your gearscore up to a good enough level to get into a 10 or 25 man group you have to grind the emblems and then finally, in order to get into the instances, you have to have done them before. It’s a very time consuming, laborious process.  This is the real grind because you now have to rely on 9 or 24 people you don’t know to let you into an instance to get more gear to become parts of other 10 and 25 man runs.  You’re also capped to one run of each instance a week, so it’s not even like you can just do these again and again, so you have to pick your groups carefully. My advice would be to get yourself into a guild, or at the very least a capable group of friends who play, have a brain, and want to progress through the dungeons.

Where achievements matter, if you don't have them, you can't take part 🙁

So, yeah, thats all you have to do in preparation for Cataclysm, simple enough, eh?







2 responses to “Life Begins At 80!”

  1. TeldurUK avatar

    I’ve just recently hit the 80 milestone, although I’m enjoying gearing up via the heroic instances. Whether or not I’ll be geared up in time to take down the Lich King prior to Catacylsm, is another matter…

  2. Cataclysm CD Key avatar

    I quite like surfing your articles. Keep up the good work.

Leave a Reply