Weekly Warcraft Wednesday: Garrisons, Dungeons, and Treants, Oh My.

A Quick Note: If you’d like to play together I can be found on Kael’Thas.  I play Alliance, primarily on my Balance / Resto Druid, Orville.

Last week I talked a lot about the journey to level 100 and some of the disappointment that followed.  I spent some time this week trying to delve a bit deeper into what Warlords of Draenor has to offer at level 100.  I’m not going to lie, my findings didn’t really change my original feelings that much, but I suppose there are some things to talk about.

Upgrade your garrison.

There’s not a ton of level 100 content right now, but one thing you can do is upgrade your garrison and it’s buildings.  Virtually all of the garrison buildings offer pretty substantial benefits in one way or another, so it’s definitely worth the effort to upgrade them.  There are far too many buildings and upgrades to mention here, but the two things I’ve been aiming for are more garrison resources and more benefits to your NPC recruits.  Your followers are capable of bringing you gear from their missions, so it’s important that you have as many of them outfitted as well as possible.  Having a salvage yard helps to upgrade their items so that they can help upgrade yours.  The trading post and the lumber mill help generate more garrison resources so that you can upgrade things like the salvage yard more quickly.  That is my current strategy at least.

No raids yet, but dungeons aplenty.

The mount reward from Molten Core.

Until December 2nd the only available raid content was the rehash of Molten Core.  It’s fun if you want to dip your toes into some raid content, and it rewards a mount and an epic helm.  There are no traditional loot tables though, only the final boss drops anything, so don’t expect to walk out with a bunch of sweet gear.  There were however a lot of dungeons to try.  Most dungeons have a normal and heroic version, with the heroic version requiring an average item level of 610.  This means that you’ll almost certainly have to spend some time in the normal versions of the dungeons or try and find high level gear in other places.

Ashran is fun.  Kind of. 

 

If you don’t feel like running dungeons over and over, the PvP events on Ashran are a fun change of pace…when they’re working properly.  This is the aspect of level 100 end-game content I’ve spent the most time with so I’d like to take some time to clarify how the zone works (and doesn’t work).

Yes I know, the tree is bugged.

The map is set up basically like a straight road with a base on either.  At the center, between the two bases, there is a flag and giant treant.  When the battle starts each team attempts to control the flag by having players stand near it.  Once a team controls that flag, they move up the road towards the enemy’s base and control another flag.  Most notably though, whoever controls the central flag, controls the treant.  He’ll fight for your team and help you wreak havoc on the enemy, or at least he’s supposed to.  At present he seems to be bugged most of the time.  He’ll walk from the center of the map to wherever the vast majority of the fighting is happening and then he’ll just vanish and reset back at the center and start all over.  As far as I can tell, most PvP players are aware of this so please feel free to stop screaming at the NPC tree to join the battle.  It’s not a person, it can’t hear you, and it’s broken.  Deal with it.

Please stop fighting on the bridge.

If you manage to capture the first three flags you’ll find your team pushing into the opposite team’s base with the goal of killing the team’s NPC leader.  This is not an easy feat as you’re dealing with both enemy players, the enemy NPC leader, and several other NPC mobs.  To make matters worse, the attacking team must get passed the bridge and into the enemy base which can be difficult as the bridge acts as a pretty nasty choke point.  The real problem here though is that if the attacking team gets overwhelmed and chooses to fall back, they must leave the base and cross back over the bridge, but by doing so, the enemy’s NPC leader seems to reset.  He goes back to full health and moves back to his original spot in the base.  So if you’ve almost killed him and everyone runs out of the base, you have to start over…and you only have ten minutes.  What’s worse, any player with a taunt can use it to attract the boss out of the base and onto the bridge, thus resetting him.  So even if things are going well, one bad apple can ruin the whole party for everyone.  Of course, all of this would be somewhat easier if the treant would work and help kill the NPC boss and ensure that someone was in the base fighting him at all times.

So yeah, Ashran is kind of a mess right now.  That said, it’s still a lot of fun, probably the most fun I’ve had doing PvP in WoW in a long time.  In addition, the battles in Ashran are not on a set timer like the Tol Barad and WIntergrasp events were, so you can come help out for a while if you’re waiting to do a dungeon and there is no penalty when you leave.  It’s a fun system in that sense; PvP with little pressure.  Once they work out the bugs with treant and the bridge, the entire experience should play a lot smoother too.

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