Friday, May 1, 2009


I might have been incredibly slack about posting in recent months but I'm still reading lots of blogs and most recently have become a fan of the excellent WTT:RP thanks to Anna of the Too Many. WTT:RP is a role play focused blog written by a group of quality role players from Feathermoon, the server which is home to my main character Jezrael. If you have any interest in RP I highly recommend checking it out.

My interest in role play and who my characters are is always a background thread to my experience of playing. While I'm generally more consciously focused on preparing for the raid, or making some gold to support that expensive raiding habit the stories about who my different characters are simmers along in the back of my mind, and of occasion I spend some time waffling my thoughts to my RP friendly co-workers.

I'm always putting off writing about my different characters because none of them are completely fleshed out. Most of what I know about them is their personalities and some of what caused them to be that way. Often I haven't thought in great detail about their physical characteristics. I think it's high time that I wrote down what I know. Perhaps more will grow from that. Perhaps I'll finally write the story of how Jezrael tamed her first companion animal. Perhaps I might even engage in some in-game RP one day.

I'l start with Jezrael since she is the character I know most about.

I'm not quite sure how old Jezrael is. She is definitely not thousands of years old. I think of her as being sort of middling in age. Mature but not middle aged. She grew up in Ashenvale and comes of a family who traditionally have been Sentinels. I still haven't thought up a family name that I like for her that isn't too trite, already exists, or doesn't suit her.

During her formative years Jez trained as a hunter with the eventual intention of becoming a Sentinal and roamed the forests of Ashenvale with her boon companion Broichan; a young druid in training. Although she never revealed as much to Broichan, as they grew up Jez fell in love with him and believed that one day, when the time was right, they would marry. There was no rush, they were young and they both had much to learn in their respective crafts.

Unfortunately for Jez, Broichan; who was some seasons older than her, was sent off into the world by his druid mentor on some kind of clandestine mission, and after a time she didn't hear from him anymore. I don't where he went or why, only that Jez's overall motivation and why she didn't become a Sentinel, why she left her home and went out in the wider world also, is because she is searching for the man she loves. It is her tragedy, that she doesn't know where he is, or what happened to him, or whether he even lives, and this has shaped her personality.

As a Sentinel in training Jez had a great deal of anger for the Horde. Especially with the Horde's deforestation activities. However her experiences in the broader world have tempered her feelings, and although she is at heart still distrustful, she has learnt that not everything is as black and white as she might like.

Personality-wise Jez is quite serious, she has strong sense of right and wrong and values honour above all else. She finds it hard to let go and relax and has few close friends since she is generally distrusting. Letting people get close to her is difficult, motivated by losing someone she loved so fiercely in Broichan, she doesn't want to open herself to more pain, and therefore of course is missing out on so much. She can appear to be quite aloof and judgemental of others, but if you win her trust and loyalty she will be a staunch companion. The hustle and bustle of the great cities are something she generally avoids, preferring to keep to less civilised areas, she is happiest when out in the wilds, just her and her companion. She could be considered somewhat tactless and direct although she will tell you she is just honest. Alcohol is a weakness and she has had a few embarrassing moments as a result of one too many jugs of wine. Jez is very aware of her own dignity and loss of this causes shame.

Thinking about what I would want for Jez in the sense of character development through story, it would be for her to have some experiences where she learns to let go more and enjoy the here and now rather than focusing on what might have been or what may be. Where she is forced to further acknowledge that there are shades of grey, that nothing is as straight forward as she might like it to be. That it is ok to be vulnerable and to let love (whether romantic or platonic) into her life.

Physically, Jez is tall (of course, she's an elf) and as a hunter her build is lithe with a smooth flowing motion to her movements that is both studied and quiet. No stomping or screaming here. Jez is in no way arrogant, she is capable and she knows it but feels no need to broadcast this. Her garb is utilitarian and practical, she has little taste for fripperies or fashionable attire with the most ornamentation of her clothing present as subdued woven designs on the garments she wears beneath her trusty mail. Her hair is long and purple and while she prefers it loose practicality oftens sees it tied into a braid. She wears a smooth shaped stone strung onto a leather thong about neck and beneath her clothing. It was a gift from Broichan and thus she has great emotional attachment to it.

That felt good! Writing that down helped me discover a few more things I didn't know about Jezrael. I think I shall have to do this more often, and definitely for my other characters.

I wonder how much other players think about their characters, even if, like me, they don't actively role play them?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Epic flight - old skool style

One of my goals ever since she hit 70 has been to get epic flight for Seph. I scrimped and saved but it took me a while to get the gold together and by the time I had Northrend was upon us and Jez was my first character out the door to level up and get ready to raid. That achieved I started playing Seph a lot more and decided there was no point worrying about epic flying until I could train the cold weather flying skill at level 77. That day recently arrived and with much glee I also purchased the Artisan riding skill. Huzzah!

Now I was faced with a choice. I could simply train the epic flight skill or, I could undertake the original quest line. As someone who really enjoys the druidic lore it was a simple choice - I would do the quests and using the wonderful guide by Aurik at /hug it was an enjoyable and straight forward process. Although everything was a lot easier at level 77 I still had a bit of trouble on the Eagle Essence since I elected to stay in Moonkin form and burn the guy down. The other parts of the quest were cake and I just enjoyed the lore even though the running around all over Outlands and then to Azshara was a little tiresome. It just made me look forward to getting epic flight form even more! Emelin on his druid Broichan and Miss Csilla helped me out with a heroic Setthek Halls and finally it was mine (sadly the mount didn't drop)! Seph is now a very pretty, very fast, birdie!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Pew pew..... Zzzzzzz...

Drunken Badgers cleared Naxx 25 on our first visit there as a raid. This was awesome - we got many loots and a feeling of satisfaction at our awesomeness. This was lame - when there is no challenge it's a little boring. Well it wasn't a straight one shot of each boss...we had a couple of tries on Thaddius and Gluth before we downed them.

I know Naxx is the entry level raid for Wrath but it was no where near like the challenge we experienced when first starting Karazhan in TBC. There is a discussion going on in our forums at the moment about this very subject. Generally the feeling is - this time round we are an end game experienced team. Many of us have been working together raiding since the Kara days - and therefore it's not so much that the bar has been lowered by Blizz but that we exceed a bar that has been set to allow entry into the game for players who are at the place we were when TBC first came out.

One thing everyone agrees on - we hope Ulduar is released pretty soon before we get bored of current content and that it is more of a challenge.

The remaining challenges for our raid currently are Malygos 25 and Sarth 3D. I'm pretty confident we'll get Malygos soon - our 'clean up raid' got him to 20% last week and that was without all of the A team regulars in the group. Sarth 3D, as was pointed out in the comments of my recent post on fighting Malygos as a hunter, seems to be the fight considered the most challenging by the broader community. So maybe that will take a little longer.

One thing is for sure - I personally need to work on my Heigan dance party skills!