What Askevar 2.0 has taught me…

Last year at some point, my husband decided he loved his paladin enough that he wanted a second one, so he rolled another one.  Truth be told, he has a third one on this account, that he and my son play together, but we all consider it our son’s toon.

With a server full of toons and only one death knight permitted per server, I wasn’t able to do this.  I also didn’t want to level one on another server where I’d have no friends and/or a guild that would expect time commitments I couldn’t fulfill as I’m quite dedicated to my ThoBro guild and guildies.

Along came SAN – Single Abstract Noun – the blogging community guild.  They have raids – very fun times I hope to join in on when my schedule works but you do what you can.  It’s a group of bloggers and blog readers… and anyone interested in blogging pretty much.  Naturally, guild chat is always hopping.  But as a guild of kindred spirits, it seems to function well on it’s own.  It’s pleasant to be there – whether I want to be a chatterbox or just want to quietly grind on my own.

Suddenly, I had the perfect environment for me to level another dk.  Real ID also meant that I could chat with my best friend whilst doing so [or while she is on her own alt server].  Originally I had planned to level a blood tank, but that got frustrating, so I opted to make Askevar 2.0 a strictly dps frost dual wield dk.  She’s level 74 now as I did a leveling spurt during the fire festival but she’ll probably slowly creep to 80 from now on as I plan to try and instance on her once a day for badges [time permitting].

I’m excited over the prospect of improving my main’s dps.  When my husband leveled a second paladin, his main’s dps offspec improved significantly.  I also love knowing what I’m doing while leveling.  I can focus on dpsing in an instance rather than have ‘oh what does this button do?’ moments.  I not only know my rotation, but it’s in my muscle memory already.

I’m also learning some other valuable lessons.  With Askevar 2.0, I’m not worrying over leveling cooking… or fishing… or first aid… or even professions at the moment.  No fussing over achievements – though I’ll get her a title eventually.  I’ll also eventually give her some gathering professions but for now I’m selling everything I get on the Auction House.  It is truly amazing what people will pay for some of the random raw forms of food and minerals and whatnot.

I earned enough to buy regular flying in outlands and I have the money for Northrend flying once I hit 77.  Yeah, I’m a spoiled brat that forgot that normal new 70s can’t have flight right away…  You have to have an 80 to buy the BOA book.  Bummer.  [Yeah, I’m a trust fund alt person].

And yes, before you ask, the SAN guild dk I’ve got is named Askevar.  I wasn’t expecting to level the toon when I created her otherwise I probably would have named her something else.  She looks just like my main, save her hair color – which I changed to white.

So anyway, the point I’m going to make as both Venoym [my hubby] and my best friend Endyme [of Unholy Randomness] have been telling me is that rolling a second one of your class can teach you a lot.

PS: If you want two dks on a server, you can transfer one to a server you already have one on – it works so I hear.

Alt Update

Askevar is now 2h frost tank to collect souls for shadow’s edge.  Her threat actually seems a bit higher than in the dual wield build… not appreciably, but just a smidge.  I got just over 200 souls last week between a run of the first 4 bosses in ICC [6 of our 10 regulars were out so we snagged other random people and alts to fill] and ICC25 up through fester and rotface with a few shots at Dreamwalker – YAY ADDS!

Askalaphos – My hunter is now decked out in 4 piece t10, thanks to VoA 🙂  She’s a great example of toon in excellent gear doing mediocre dps.  On a stand and burn I can hit 5k…  with anything else I hover in the 3-4k range.  That’s fine for heroics… but yeah… the idea of raiding with her in this shape is not pleasing.  I may need to consider a respec.

Alika – My pallytank is coming along well.  I’m hoping to get her into an ICC run eventually… as either tank or dps.  I’ve snagged a couple failed pugs so far that either couldn’t clear the trash or wouldn’t listen to mechanics and wiped on Marrowgar.  But I’d love to replace her 219 tanking ring… and frankly her 219 shield as well.  Her day will come 🙂  I’ll get a pug that can hit lower spire eventually.  I’m saving up the badges for her tanking pants next.  Her ret set is pretty good, but it’s all crafted/ICC 5 mans drops.  Yes, I’m very aware that the NES isn’t the ideal trinket for her ret offspec.  Unfortunately, most of the ones she needs are in ICC…  not going to happen anytime soon and I darn well don’t need 500 hit… so the hit trinket is out.  And “facerolling” 4-5k in an offspec ain’t bad either in randoms.

Carlyn – is slowly gearing up.  I have several more things she needs via triumphs before she’s “complete” there, but she’s coming along well.  I actually managed to pull 5k on a heroic boss fight [I stink at trash – big shock I know] so maybe I’ve not forgotten too much of warlocking from back in BC.

Aulao – My mage is doing alright.  I’ve cannibalized most of her frost for saronite for Shadow’s Edge [and my poor shaman’s as well] so they’re both behind on gear, but still doing okay.  She’s been arcane for a while but I’ve been experimenting with fire – with mixed results.

Tsali – Enhancement/resto – but spends more time in healing gear than in dps gear ironically.  I heal so that I can buy her better enhancement gear…  Still having issues with resto shaman healing in some of the simplest places.  If the group is good, it all goes smoothly.  If I have jerks and people pulling for the tank… well.. we’re probably going to wipe.  I don’t have the instincts yet or the skill to do any amazing saves.

Arica – My kitty is about 20 badges from 4 piece t10 and she’s doing awesomely…  probably the best of all my dps toons.  I’m  pulling 6-7k dps on boss fights and typically end up with an overall of 4-6k.  I’m impressed and the “rotation” really clicks well with my playing style.  She’s my primary dps alt

Kintara – My primary alt and I love her so!  If I could walk away from tanking and Askevar I would be playing her as my main.  However, I still adore tanking and Askevar too much to give up.  Disc priesting is wacky bubbly fun :D.  Save for a drop in VoA25, I may never see, she’s as geared as she can be short of ICC10/25 gear.

Kalliana – Um… she’s there.  She does the weekly and is done with gearing from triumphs… just need a better ring [curse you HPOS!!]

Odyyn – He just got his first piece of t10.  I seem to fall in and out of love with warrior tanking… some weeks I like it and run his dailies… some weeks I don’t.  Of course, jerks in ICC 25 gear can test many a tank’s patience.

Now, how do I keep it straight?  I honestly don’t know…  I just do.  They are separate toons, with separate personalities… they’re individuals, so it seems easy enough.  I also have a list on rememberthemilk dot com of things I need/want/would like to do.  I mark them off when I get them done.

“But you’re making WoW into a chore!”

No, I’m not…  I have no deadlines set on the list… no requirement to get everything or anything done.  But hey, if I get in a mood to explore or grind rep, I can easily look and see who needs what, pick what I want and go.  It’s about efficiency.  Altoholic helps with that too.  But I try to make anything I do go quickly and easily.  Since I’m cutting back on my WoW time, that’s even more important.  And if I don’t touch the list for a week?  Who cares?!

An Interesting Quandary

I scored Festergut and Rotface’s blood because no one else wanted them… had most of the badges for the 25 saronites… and now I have Shadow’s Edge.  My quandary is what now?  I’m dual wield frost tank and dual wield frost dps…  I was pulling 7k last night in the dw dps spec…  I love it.  So I’m probably going to resurrect my 2h tanking spec for a while.  It would be a crime for the Shadow’s Edge to sit… unused.  I’m the second one in the guild to manage to cobble together the 25 saronites…  Several more people have the blood and haven’t put it together just yet.  I’m also considering testing out a blood spec… but that’d take some time to get used to.

Normally I would’ve just dumped my dps spec totally, but with the dps I was bringing last night, I really need to keep it for fights where we’re swapping tanks about to the most suitable.

Weekend in Review

Decided to do a quick post before going to bed because I feel like it 😛

I spent the weekend doing a good bit of grinding Emblems of Triumph [and frost] on my main and alts. My death knight tank is of course getting the best and such, but the Disc Priest is second on that list, followed by the kitty druid, enhancement shaman, hunter and mage.

Askalaphos, my hunter got a few nice things because I ran her through the new instances on regular – Heartshiver, Krick’s Beetle Stabber and Rimebane Rifle.  She ended up getting the Windrunners Spaulders of Conquest with badges as well.

Aulao, my mage snagged herself a new wand, the Brimstone Igniter, getting her “Superior” level on all gear.

Arica, my kitty druid finally snagged the idol I’ve been working on casually for a long time – Idol of Mutilation.

Kintara now has 3 pieces of tier 9 and I’m loving it!  I’m 39ish badges away from the final t9 piece and I then plan to work on Merlin’s Robe and Bejeweled Wizard’s Bracers as well.  She snagged these:  Velen’s Leggings of Conquest, Velen’s Gloves of Conquest and she already had Velen’s Shoulderpads of Conquest.

Askevar, my main, snagged a trophy from ToC25 on Saturday evening and upgraded her chestpiece [Thassarian’s Chestguard of Triumph] and since I had the badges sitting, I went ahead and upgraded my gloves [Thassarian’s Handguards of Conquest] and pants [Thassarian’s Legguards of Conquest] to tier 9.  She’s never done better tanking than she did tonight… even with the dodge nerf, her threat was amazing and for the first time in a long time, I actually felt solid – which is a big deal for me because I have never felt on solid ground where she’s concerned.  I know that sounds crazy, but, well…  Let’s just say I think I finally accepted that she’ll never have pally level threat and I am where I am for a reason – because I’m getting the job done to the best of my ability…  Maybe nothing like the pressure of a new instance can make you focus on your strengths and attempt to overcome any weaknesses?  Eh, I dunno but it felt amazingly good.

And finally, my hubby queued up his baby pally with my baby prot warrior for a level 74ish instance.  I went dps because I didn’t really have good tank gear and I didn’t want to be a detriment.  I bought dual-spec for the occasion lol.  We got in there and the “tank” [another pally] had half of everyone else’s health and was a level higher.  He was using spellpower and ret gear rather than tanking/defense gear.  After a couple wipes, we voted him out since he decided to just refuse to move or do anything and I queued up as tank/dps [which seemed to relieve the shaman healer].  I did much better as a tank than I had as a dps and only lost threat a couple times when hubby’s baby pally spiked 2k dps [yes at level 73].

I love the new instance finder because I can get 3-4 toons through for their daily frost while my son has his morning nap!  I LOVE it!

Circle of Tanks! Tanking Questionnaire

I’ve been waiting for this to show up!  Thanks to Koriel on Whatisboom!

What is the name, class, and spec of your primary tank?
Askevar, Death Knight, Frost 2h [offspec is Dual Wield Frost]

What is your primary tanking environment? (i.e. raids, pvp, 5 mans)
25 man raids, 10 mans and occasional heroics
Continue reading “Circle of Tanks! Tanking Questionnaire”

Dual Wield Tanking Test 1: Ulduar 10

Our ten man group ran Ony10, ToC10 [first 2 bosses] and then hit Ulduar.  Since our team only raids one night, we’ll be extending the Ulduar ID to give ourselves more time to work on it.  I didn’t want to risk gimping the raid with an untried spec in the new raids, but felt I could afford to skimp a little in Ulduar.

It went very well.  My threat was higher on average and I was still plenty hardy as well.  The healers had no issues at all.  I’m considering holding off until I can get the 1h gargoyle runes in the next patch because my current spec is solid.  I have higher avoidance, am handily capped expertise wise and hitwise, and higher health pool.  Even got a PINK AXE on Ony that no one else could really use.  It’s soooo pretty!

*In reality I wasn’t going into Ulduar blind – I knew the DW spec was viable.

3.2.2 is Upon us! What does that mean for a Frost DK tank?

We’re getting some buffs!!!

* Threat of Thassarian now also causes Rune Strike to use both weapons when dual-wielding.
* Unbreakable Armor: Cooldown reduced to 1 minute and changed back to granting 25% additional armor while active instead of flat damage reduction based on armor. The amount of strength granted has been reduced to 10%.

[Frost Presence]: The damage reduction granted by this ability has been increased from 5% to 8%.

Ultimately, we’re going to be hardier and it appears dual wield tanking will be made viable!  I’m very excited about this!  There is also a nerf to pally threat, which while it will make our job as MT or OT easier in some regards, it’ll have a larger impact on the raid.  Your best geared, highest level dpsers who can already touch explosive tank’s threat will have to watch their burst damage and threat even more closely and perhaps hold back even more.