~*This post contains pictures and information relating to the Battle for Azeroth Alpha. If you don’t want to know or see anything relating to Alpha, please turn away now~*

EDIT: MArch 16 – a new build went up last night with a couple of changes that will hopefully address some points below, so expect a follow up post in the future! Also, had a lovely reader remind me of the existence of Frost Shock, so I need to look at how I’m incorporating that into the rotation, as that might help with somethings, too.

Battle for Azeroth Alpha has been out for a little while now. I’ve been super lucky to get an invitation to the Alpha, so have been spending the past few weekends slowly making my way through the content, giving feedback and comments and reporting bugs and what not, to try and find all the little things that might need fixing before the game goes live. I’ve been streaming my adventures (you can check out some of the videos over on my twitch channel twitch.tv/cinder_streams). All I can say is BfA is going to kick BUTT. It’s flippin’ STUNNING.




So, of course I’ve been doing all of this initial levelling as a pandaren shaman on the Alliance side. I’ve been trying out elemental and a little of restoration. I wanted to write a little bit about the elemental side of things first, because that’s what I’ve been doing most of all.

NOTE: I am absolutely not a theorycrafter. I don’t sim anything, I go by gut, and am not at all an expert on elemental shamans in any way, shape or form. And obviously as this is Alpha, everything I write here today may be completely different tomorrow. 

For the most part, elemental shamans haven’t changed an awful lot. A lot of the same spells and talents are there, just shifted around a bit. (You can see all the spell/talent changes on wowhead here.) There are some spells we have back (welcome back Tremor Totem and Earth Shield!!!), but the overall approach is the same:

Cast spells to generate maelstrom

Cast spells to spend maelstrom

But whilst the approach is the same, getting there is a little different, and it’s lead to a very different, much slower elemental shaman, with very little variance and choice in game play.

Flame Shock

Firstly, Flame Shock is back to having a cooldown of 6 seconds, and is a baseline of 15 seconds on the target with no maelstrom cost. (i.e. It no longer increases duration based on maelstrom spent, as Flame Shock no longer costs maelstrom to cast. It’s worth noting that wowhead currently says that it does change the duration of the dot based on maelstrom, however in game this is not the case.). On the plus side you can cast Flame Shock on the pull (though you could do this in Legion too). The down side is that you can’t multi-dot more than 2 targets anymore. Unfortunately this has sometimes meant that Lava Surge procs have gone to waste on a non-Flame Shocked target, as the target with Flame Shock on them has died before the cooldown on the spell came up again to cast it on a new target, followed by the proc. This might not sound like a big deal, but Lava Burst does almost the same amount of damage as Lightning Bolt does without a crit and only generates 2 more maelstrom for its trouble, so you really want it to crit to make it worth your while.

Essentially this just means that we need to more careful about which targets get Flame Shock on them, making sure they’re going to stay alive for the duration of the spell so that we have a debuffed target to push Lave Surge procs into. The cooldown on Flame Shock also means that we’re getting fewer Lava Surge procs overall, which means getting those crit-buffed hits even more important.

So far, I miss being able to multi-dot adds for the multiple procs of Lava Surge… which is probably the reason they took that ability away. It’s just something I’m going to have to adjust to. I will say, though, that I do miss the ability to control the length of the dot on a target by choosing to spend extra maelstrom on a longer dot. It made me feel like I had some control over my spell choices.

Earth Shock

Earth Shock has also been reverted to an earlier version of itself, with the scaled damage based on maelstrom spent affect no longer in place. Instead, Earth Shock costs 60 maelstrom, and does a flat rate of damage. This has been the hardest adjustment for me. Two things that bother me with this reversion.

Firstly, a personal preference – when a mob is about to die, I would rather cast an instant 10 maelstrom cost earth shock than spend almost 2 seconds casting Lightning Bolt. Lightning Bolt is overkill at that point, and feels like a waste of time. So for me it makes killing mobs slower (especially if they manage to interrupt your cast.)

Secondly, tying in to the set maelstrom cost, sometimes it feels like it takes a REALLY long time to get enough maelstrom generated to use Earth Shock. And what’s worse- it’s extremely underwhelming. When you’re standing there not getting Lava Surge procs and just casting Lightning Bolt for ages, it’s a real slap in the face when you finally get that moment to cast Earth Shock and it hits like a wet noodle. Damage aside, it doesn’t have a satisfying animation or anything associated with it. (This animation has been true for Legion, but at least on live Earth Shock can hit like a truck, so it still feels satisfying).

Overall, Earth Shock is my biggest gripe for the class at the moment, and where I would really like to see some changes made, if possible.

Maelstrom generation

As I mentioned in the Earth Shock section, it can take a long time to generate maelstrom. I find the vast majority of my time is spent casting Lightning Bolt (in between Healing Surges to keep myself alive!) which, to be honest, just gets a bit boring. Part of the issue with lack of Flame Shocks giving Lava Surge procs is that it contributes to this slower maelstrom generation… it’s a vicious cycle. And again, once you spent all this time and effort building your maelstrom, to have the “finisher” be underwhelming just doesn’t make it feel worth it.

The talent Aftershock helps with this – Your spells refund 30% of all Maelstrom spent on them – but it does come at the cost of being in place of Storm Elemental and Liquid Magma Totem, and if we were in a single target fight, we’d be choosing Storm Elemental, because building up to a weak Earth Shock isn’t going to be as strong (though of course this would need to be simmed- getting out a few more Earth Shocks may end up being a damage increase over the damage

Another new talent that has come in, Molten Fury (Lava Surge now also causes Lava Burst to generate 50% more Maelstrom) may also be a nice help, though it would rely on being able to get lots of Lava Surge procs to be useful. Going against this talent most of all, though, is that it’s on the same line now as Elemental Blast, which is so embedded in elemental shaman gameplay it should just be baseline now.  (side note: Elemental Blast is still very satisfying, and at the moment does some nice damage. If this is reduced, however, this talent line will need some thought).

Lastly there is High Voltage, which is most likely the best choice to help generate more maelstrom – Lightning Bolt and Chain Lightning can now cause a second Elemental Overload. The downside to this talent is that it’s not consistent, it’s RNG based, so the proc rate will determine how effective this will be (Elemental Overload helping to generate additional maelstrom through the extra hit it does).

It comes down to this: there are now only 2 spells for the spec that cost maelstrom – Earth Shock and Earthquake – there is no variance in their strength based on the maelstrom spent, and it takes a long time to be able to cast them at all, so they really need to be worth it.


Chain Lightning is everyone’s favourite spell in game (right?), and it’s still beautiful in BfA. But the damage reduction done to it is striking. Currently on live Chain Lightning hits for just a little less than Lightning Bolt. On Alpha, it hits for half the damage of Lightning Bolt, and generates less maelstrom per target hit. What I’ve noticed so far is that if you’ve got 5 mobs or more, this is fine. However anything less and you wonder why you’re there at all, and start cursing your fat panda butt for pulling those extra mobs. (Also, you’re probably dead because you’re so damn squishy).

Then there’s earthquake. Earthquake has had its cost increased to 75 maelstrom, making it pretty expensive to cast. Thankfully (at the moment) it seems to be worth it. But again, because of the high cost, you’re going to want a decent number of mobs (assuming Earth Shock gets some better damage going on).

For the most part, I found it difficult to AoE effectively during levelling unless there were about 5 “normal” health mobs. Chain Lightning + Earthquake was usually enough to get them down reasonably well. However anything from 2-4 mobs, or if there was an elite thrown in there at all, it was actually quite difficult to deal with, and would generally kill me. The maelstrom would take too long to generate so earthquake would take longer to get down, by which time I was pretty damaged myself. (Tell you what, I’ve never used my stun totem so much before!!!). Liquid Magma Totem is still available as a talent, which is nice. Again, though, it’s going to be better with large mob sizes rather than small. So we fine ourselves in this weird place with mobs of 2-4.


I’ve griped a lot in the past about how much movement really impacts being an elemental shaman. In fights with movement in them, our dps is punished pretty badly. In the past Blizz have done things to help deal with this: we’ve been able to cast Lightning Bolt on the move, or, as in the case of Legion, our Shocks not having cooldowns or maelstrom cost limitations; it wasn’t always ideal to reapply a flame shock dot on a target if it were a lower maelstrom, but it still felt like you were able to do something as you were moving from point A to point B so that was nice.

In Alpha, we have nothing that can be cast on the move unless Earth Shock has been charged up or Flame Shock is off cooldown. Relying on Lava Surge procs is also down given how much harder it is to multi-dot mobs. And to rub salt into the wound, Gust of Wind has been removed as a talent (zomg not my fart talent!!), so we can’t even quickly dash to get to Point B so we can start casting again. For me personally, I can deal with one or two of these things being in place, but it does feel quite punishing having all of these things combined.

There are talents that can help with this a bit, but it does lock us in to them if there’s a big chunk of movement. You could take Spirit Wolf (While transformed into a Ghost Wolf, you gain 5% increased movement speed and 5% damage reduction every 1 sec, stacking up to 4 times). There’s also Stormkeeper, which is the watered down Elemental Shaman artifact replacement talent – Charge yourself with lightning, causing your next 2 Lightning Bolts or Chain Lightnings to be instant cast and trigger an Elemental Overload on every target. If you know damage is coming, Stormkeeper can be pre-cast to assist with this. And whilst this does sound very good and reasonable, the kicker is that it’s on the same talent line as Ascendance, so you loose a big CD to gain essentially 2 casts on the run.

Something has to give here, though. Having to choose movement talents over CDs is a bit of a blow, really.

On being squishy

Oh my goodness the squishiness! To be fair, this is usually an issue when levelling as elemental shamans at the best of times. Except at the moment, because damage is underwhelming, it feels worse because things have the time to actually kill you. It’s extremely frustrating. It does feel like I spend more of my time healing myself than damaging enemies, which makes for very depressing game play. It doesn’t feel satisfying when you defeat a boss; you just feel bloody relieved that it didn’t kill you first. Like I mentioned above, having stun totems are very helpful, for sure, and having Earth Shield is nice, too! But I still die a lot.

Overall thoughts

At the moment, I’m not thrilled. The changes (minor as they may seem) when added together have made the spec feel extremely slow, and very punishing if we need to move. The slow maelstrom generation, and the lack of ability to just ping off the last bit of health on a mob makes the overall gameplay quite stilted- I’m spending far too much of my time casting Lightning Bolt before I’m able to do anything else. And that just gets boring.

When it boils down to it, the changes have made it so that the class no longer has choices to make when playing. I don’t get to choose between, for example, putting a longer dot on a target or doing a big Earth Shock; I don’t get to choose if I’m going to earthquake these 3 mobs or dot them up with Flame Shocks first to try and force some Lava Surge procs; I don’t get to choose if I’m going to drop a little Flame Shock on my target as I move- I’m either going to do nothing at all while we move, or I’m going to stand still and piss my healers off by finishing a cast before moving at all.

What I would to see is some flexibility put back into the spec. I want to think a bit about what I’m doing while I’m playing. I don’t want to feel like I’m spamming ‘1’ all the time for Lightning Bolt. I want to feel strong; I want to feel like my spell choices matter.

Don’t get me wrong, none of this is the end of the world… but it does have me looking at other dps classes kinda seriously for the first time since becoming a shaman, and I really don’t like that.


So darn beautiful


So those are my thoughts at the moment on Elemental Shamans. What do you think of the changes? Do they suit you? Or would you like to see some different changes made?



I’m not very good at saving money in real life, but I’m a little better at it in WoW (mostly because we don’t have to pay rent or anything in game hehe). I’m not the greatest at making gold at all; I don’t have the time or the patience. But I do make enough to support my raiding requirements, and every now and again am able to keep some extra aside.

There’s a world quest on the Broken Shore that Khadgar gives us, to find some Kirin Tor Coins that he’s managed to drop on the ground. When we find one, we get a very short buff that leaves a sparkling rainbow trail behind us when we walk. It’s the most beautiful effect, and have wished for a toy that would give that same buff. Turns out there is one.

The Mad Merchant is a rare NPC spawn in Dalaran, and oh boy does this guy clean out your bank. He only sells 4 items, the cheapest of which is 250,000 gold (yes, a quarter of a million). Thankfully, that cheapest item is the Prismatic Bauble, and it gives that same buff from the world quest, only this time it lasts a little bit longer, and can be used every 2 minutes.


I took my little Void Elf Warlock out for a run in the snow with it- isn’t is beautiful?!


So now I’m broke again… but I think it’s worth it 😀


I have been working on this darn post for weeks now and haven’t gotten around to finishing it. I should have added “write my bucket list post” to my bucket list. Lame.

So 2018 is a big year for many reasons. The most obvious being that World of Warcraft’s next expansion, Battle for Azeroth will be coming out. awww yeah!

giphy (3).gif

BfA’s release this year actually makes a bucket list a little tricky to do, because the release date will impact just how much I can get through. For the purposes of this bucket list, I’m going to assume that BfA will release on September 21st (which is the latest it can release, according to the pre-order). Obviously if BfA comes out a lot earlier, I’m not going to be able to achieve everything I want to… but we’ll see how I go. So, on with the list!

Make a list of every pet and mount available in Legion and get any that are missing (That are not RNG dependent).

To be fair, I think I’m most of the way through this, though there are obvious mounts that I am missing. Namely the pvp prestige mounts. There is at least 1 that I absolutely definitely have to get, and maybe even a 2nd if there is time. With the pets, I need to get Uuna and do her little quest line. I also need to get the new Mailemental pet, and need to finish the meta pet battle achievement on Argus (which thankfully is a lot easier than Family Familiar, but will still take a decent amount of time).

Finish getting all of the class mounts

At the time of writing this I have warlock, warrior, rogue, demon hunter and death knight left to go. The warlock is at 110, she’s just very slowly making her way through the rest of the order hall campaign, and will then move on to the class mount quests. The Rogue is at 108, so not too far off dinging (slow as she is) but my warrior, demon hunter and death knight I’ve not even started. And given how busy I’ve been lately, this is actually going to be a bit of a challenge to get done. But I will!

Get more Mage Tower appearances

When Battle for Azeroth launches, most of the artifact skins will remain. That is except for the Mage Tower challenge appearances, and the 15+ mythic keystone skin. Which means I have some work ahead of me! Below is a list of all the challenge appearances I want, in order of preference. The enhancement shaman one I’ve just been lazy about. Disc priest I’m just crap at… the rest I haven’t even bothered trying yet. But I do love their appearances so would really like to be able to get them done before they go away. The 15+ skin I’m less concerned about- that one would just be nice to have. 🙂

  • Enhancement shaman
  • Discipline priest
  • Holy paladin
  • Frost Mage
  • Arcane Mage
  • Retribution paladin
  • Restoration druid
  • Protection paladin (though I honestly don’t see this one happening at all)
  • maaaaybe affliction warlock

The one thing I am very glad about is that the Balance of Power appearances don’t appear to be going away, so I’ve decided that I won’t focus on doing those on any toons yet. That will be a future Cinder problem.

Stream more

I’m cheating a little with this one, because technically I’ve already “achieved” this, but I do want to stream more. I also want to be putting together more videos (though I would also like either some decent video editing software for my PC, or a better place to put my Mac so that I can do my editing work more easily!). I’m enjoying streaming, even though it kinda goes against all of my personality traits. But it’s nice having people around when we kill bosses 🙂

So that’s my list. I looks short, but each of those things is pretty time consuming. I’m genuinely concerned about my ability to get through all of these, given that March is hot on our heels, and let’s face it, Battle for Azeroth is more than likely going to come out earlier than September 21. But we will see how I go!


How is it that a month has passed since I wrote in here? Usually this happens when I’ve spent a lot of time out of the game and have just been busy with work, but that’s not the case this time (although the being busy with work is definitely true!).

Anyways, it’s been awhile, so I thought I’d best do a catch-up post to let you know what I’ve been up to and what I have planned.


So first up, probably the biggest reason I’ve been writing less in here is that I have been streaming quite a bit. It initially started to stream our raid nights, which was fun and all. But then this happened:


For reals! This was me at work when I got the email. Followed shortly after by tears.

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I’ve been spending a bit of time in the Alpha running around and seeing how things are, reporting bugs and typos in quests and what not. And I’ve been streaming it, which has been quite fun. I don’t have a lot of viewers on raid nights because it’s a silly time in the US, but when I stream on weekends there are more people around, and it’s really enjoyable. I’m not a great streamer; I don’t show my face (because no-one needs to see that!) and I ramble a lot and get distracted, but hopefully it’s a little entertaining to people.

The other weekend I had a great time hanging out in alpha with some lovely friends in chat. We go to experience a terrifying quest line that just freaked me out so badly. It was scary and hilarious. I made a video about it, which was fun! It’s over here on YouTube if you’re interested. (WARNING: contains Alpha spoilers).


Between streaming all the raids and now the Alpha as well, I’ve been clocking up a decent amount of streaming time. And somehow have managed to get a reasonable number of followers and viewers… enough that this ended up happening the other day:


This basically means I’m able to have subscribers and stuff, which is kinda cool! I don’t actually expect this to go anywhere, but it is kinda fun 🙂 I celebrated by setting up a new overlay for my stream and making some new panels to match. I’m trying to get better at streaming, but I know I’ll never be anything interesting. I’m just doing it for the fun 🙂 If you want to stop by I’m over at twitch.tv/cinder_streams. (note: I will always say if I’m streaming Alpha so that if you’re not wanting spoilers, you can avoid them).


I KNOW! This was completely random, but we’ve started up Battletagged again. This time it’s going to be a lot more casual, with episodes being recorded when we have something to say (rather than trying to stick to a strict schedule). It’s just me and Neuro at the moment. We talk about it a bit more in our first episode back. We’ve got a new website address – Battletagged.com.au – but everything else should be the same. We’re back up on Stitcher and iTunes. Have a listen! And if there’s anything you’d like us to talk about on the show, let us know. 🙂


Raiding has been going ok. We had a rough time with Kin’garoth as well… for awhile we just weren’t really using a strat that worked for us (one of the challenges of there being so many different strats available for a boss!) In the end we got there though, with a strat that seems weird, but it’s what works for us, so that’s good!

After that it was Varimathras which we managed to get down really quickly actually.  (I still need to make a kill video for it- oops!!) This week we went back to do a re-clear which took us awhile, but we do have a whole night to work on Coven tonight, which is going to drive us up the wall, but should be do-able either this week or next week.


So real-life stuff. Well, I got a promotion- huzzah! That was nice. But I has also meant that my workload has increased quite substantially. At the moment I don’t mind tooooo much.. it’s been really great the past week actually because part of my work requires us to do public consultation to get feedback on what we’re doing, and then check in again with everyone at the end to make sure we did what people wanted. I’m at that end part now, with checking in, and I’ve been getting some really lovely messages back, saying how impressed they are with our work etc. It makes all the extra hours worth it, you know? (That and I do honestly feel like the work I do has the ability to do some good in a small way, so that’s great too). Anyway, all of this has meant super busy days at work, which some people have noticed because I’ve also been neglecting twitter!

Anyways, that’s where things are at at the moment. I have to finish off my bucket list blog post (which is part way written… but might be December by the time I finish writing it! lol) I also want to do some posts about the alpha and the class changes and things like that… I just keep running out of time to do all the things I want to do. Gah! Why is sleep a thing, eh? Or maybe I could just be younger so I could deal with having less sleep. I hope everyone reading is doing well. I promise to keep trying to write more often!


~*~*~ Warning: this post contains spoilers about early Legion storyline, and end of expansion story line. If you have not defeated Argus yet and don’t want to be spoiled, please do not read any further.~*~*~ 

I have to preface this post by saying that prior to Legion, I hadn’t really given Malfurion and Tyrande much thought other than Tyrande’s dress is super pretty, and Malfurion sleeps an awful lot. I always found their relationship a little odd (possessive? super co-dependant?), but that was about it. Come Legion though… well, I think they’re just some of the most selfish characters in Warcraft and really don’t want to be helping them with anything else in future.

I know, unpopular opinion much?

Here’s the thing- I find both of them immensely hypocritical, self-involved twits. The pair are so far up themselves that they don’t see there’s a whole world of existence outside of their tree and the Emerald Dream. I pretty much blame Malfurion for what happened to Ysera in Val’Sharah, Tyrande spends most of her time pining for, or trying to find, Malfurion, and both of them have done catastrophic things that have changed the fate of hundreds of thousands of beings.

Which is what it is (which is in the past), but you’re probably asking me what tipped me over the edge. Well, I’ll tell you- it was their complete and utter disinterest in Illidan’s departure that really got to me. Oh and boy did it get to me.


We spend a fair bit of time with these two in early Legion. Malfurion continues to marvel at how amazing the world around him is (oh and did you know Cenarius is a demigod and his mentor? I mean he’s just so freakin’ humble about it /sarcasm). Well it turns out Cenarius has gross corruption coming out of him, and Malfurion doesn’t know what to do (how does he not recognise this, btw?!), so let’s get Ysera here to sort stuff out. And that’s ok,  things aren’t looking good, we should probably get some help.

So we do a bunch of stuff to then summon Ysera who tells us we need to get the Tears of Elune (which is what we were here for anyway). Anyway we go get the Tears but surprise surprise, Xavius beat us to it.

And then Cenarius disappears. And this is the point where Malfurion is an epic hypocrite, and I get mad. Instead of turning to the grove that is literally full of some of the most powerful people available to him in the moment, including the being responsible for the Emerald Dream itself, he runs off. He literally gets up, and runs in a random direction where he thinks he can find Xavius. Good one, mate. Don’t bother to consult with anyone about what might need to be done. No, off he goes, testosterone flailing all over the place. It is this action, right here, that sealed Ysera’s fate. I mean, Malfurion and Tyrande have been in this exact situation before and they did the same damn thing. And this time, Ysera paid the price.


Perfect summary of how stupid Malfurion is

This is but one (more recent) example of their self-important behaviour. But what does that have to do with Illidan?


Illidan spent his entire life finding a way to defeat the Burning Legion. Every. damn. second. And some (many) of his actions were questionable (at best). But his motivation and goal never, ever wavered. Defeat the Burning Legion.

Malfurion was a terrible brother to Illidan. His high and mighty attitude belittled Illidan to no end. And instead of telling Malfurion to shove it, Illidan just wanted to impress him (and Tyrande, of course) even more. It’s for this reason that I hold Malfurion and Tyrande a little responsible for everything Illidan did. You don’t have to be blind to see that all Illidan wanted was to be accepted and loved by them. Well, maybe not blind… maybe just too far up themselves to see.


Don’t get me wrong, Illidan really made it difficult for those around him. In many ways he was just as stubborn and pig-headed as Malfurion in his bid to rid the world of the Burning Legion. It required absolute blind faith and trust in Illidan to see his actions being for the greater good. And I don’t blame people for questioning Illidan’s actions- they were not always what one would consider “good”. But for Malrfurion and Tyrande to say they are not as culpable is outrageous.

Apparently it’s ok for Malfurion to take it upon himself to render night elves mortal by destroying the Well of Eternity. Guys, it’s like, totally ok for him to literally rip the world to shreds in the great sundering because he, like, did it for the good of all Azerothian kind, ok? Sometimes we have to think outside of the box.
Oh but wait, no Illidan- well Illidan he apparently went about things the wrong way. He said he was gaining power to defeat the Legion, but you know, we don’t like how he’s going about it. See, Malfurion screwed the world over the “right” way. Illidan is a danger to us all and should be locked away forever.


Even Tyrande, for one shining moment, takes a tiny peek outside of her own little bubble to release Illidan from his prison because, believe it or not, maybe there’s more than one way to annihilate a universe-destroying horde of demons. But then Malfurion got mad at her, so she took it all back. (Thank goodness someone else figured out he was needed to get this done.)

Despite all this; despite everything that happened between these three characters, one truth remains: Illidan is the only one of them to follow through on his actions.

At the end of the Antorus raid, after Argus is defeated, Sargeras is finally revealed, and captured. And Illidan was there every step of the way. He did everything he promised he would do- he fought with us and stopped the Burning Legion. But no only that, oh no- Illidan went one step further. He knowingly sacrificed the rest of his life to watch over Sargeras to make sure he never comes to power again. He gave his damn life, and any remaining shred of possibility that Illidan did everything he did purely for selfish power was obliterated in that moment.

For all his faults, Illidan did it. It was touching, and a worthy ending (and yes, I cried my damn eyes out).

It felt like everything Illidan had done had been worth it. It made me feel, as a person (not my character) that even if I’m trying to do what is right, I may not always get it right, but that doesn’t mean it’s not possible. Illidan’s actions gave me hope for the underdogs, that we can do it.

So you can imagine my utter disgust at what followed next.

The first time we defeat Argus, a short quest line is started – Moments of Reflection. Here we have a crystal with parting messages from Illidan to Malfurion and Tyrande. (You can read/listen to all of the messages on wowhead here.)

To Malfurion first. And here Illidan speaks of the different choices they made in their lives, but for the common goal they shared- to keep the world safe. Illidan acknowledges he wasn’t easy to trust, but hopes his actions show the truth of his words. It’s very moving.

And you know what Malfurion says?

My brother made selfish choices, brought pain to so many. His transgressions are difficult to forgive.

This coming from the guy who literally tore Azeroth a new one?!?!!?!? Holy hell dude. Illidan hurt people, yes! He made mistakes, yes! But you know what he did? He kept on fighting to defeat the Burning Legion, because that’s what he said he’d do. What did you do? You went and had a bloody nap!

*deep breaths*

Alright, there’s still another message to go. Tyrande once saw the potential in Illidan. Surely she will understand.


Contrite words, yet I must wonder whether he truly meant them….

Seems he has a duty to fulfill…

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?!?! ARE YOU KIDDING ME RIGHT NOW?! Illidan is literally not on this planet anymore after having saved it (and the rest of the universe). And instead of coming home to revel in the celebration he deserves for saving us all, he stays in who-knows-where for the rest of eternity to make sure that Sargeras never comes back. And she thinks he’s lying? That says a lot about who she is and what she thinks of people. Where was she while we were fighting the Legion? NOWHERE. (To be fair, she did come to Suramar, which is a darn lot more than Malfurion did. Probably too busy licking his wounds. But for the rest of it, where were they?) Illidan was there every step of the way, and they abandoned us.

Even in his final moments, this very last goodbye, Illidan wanted nothing more to love and be loved by Malfurion and Tyrande. And they shrugged him off. Absolutely jerks.

I am glad there was a third message in the crystal for us champions. I will gladly defend Azeroth in Illidan’s place. Malfurion and Tyrande can go take a nap, because it’s quite clear they truly don’t care about anyone else. And I certainly do not care about them.


I mentioned in my 2017 wrap up post that raiding had gone a bit weird for awhile with yet another guild disruption and shifting and all that. I’m not going to dwell on it- the past is in the past. And since Antorus opened, I’ve been trying to keep a positive attitude towards everything, because I just want to have a good bunch of people to play this awesome game with.

So far, things are going really well.

As of tonight, we are 6/11 mythic bosses down. Tonight especially was amazing. We have been working on Mythic Imonar, and were kinda in a slump. People were feeling a bit crap, and were getting tired so making silly mistakes. It wasn’t looking great. But somehow, on the last pull of the night, magic happened. Somehow, everything came together, and not only did we get further than we had gone before, we completely winged it for the whole last section and killed the guy. It was amazing. And even better- I was streaming when we got the kill.

Hey by the way, I stream now hehe I decided with Antorus opening and the new guild happening that I would start streaming. I have a good computer that can handle it, decent internet connection- why the hell not? So I stream our raid nights. I don’t really have many viewers because most of the time it’s stupid o’clock in the US, and Aussies are usually raiding themselves. But I do have some lovely people who come along now and then who I am extremely grateful for. And when people sit mythic fights, they sometimes pop in to watch how we’re going and how we’re doing a fight in case they get called in to do it. So it’s not always too quiet.

So anyway tonight, I somehow managed to have about 5 people in my stream cheering us on while we got the kill. It was really great. 😀 I can understand how people get addicted to the streaming thing. It’s a great feeling having an audience to cheer you on while you do these things. Really helps with the whole buzz.

Anyways, I just wanted to say that I’m really loving my guild. We seem to have a really good bunch of people who can all be really stupid together (like, really bloody stupid) but still get along really well and pull our shit together when it comes to raiding. And we can be cross with each other for awhile without it resulting in people leaving or getting too fed up. It’s hard to stay cross in this team when you’ve people being Pokemon’s and what not (thanks Advo!)

All of our kill shots are up on my raiding gallery (and below for now). And if you happen to want to come along one night while I’m streaming, I’m usually on Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday nights, 8pm-11pm AEDT (so Melbourne time) over at twitch.tv/cinder_streams.



~*~*~*~*~ This post contains spoilers for collecting the Retribution Paladin hidden appearance ~*~*~*~*~

During the Christmas break I had made the decision to get the Corrupted Ashbringer skin for my retribution paladin artifact (the hidden appearance). I looked up on wowhead what I needed to do. I knew it was quite a detailed expedition, so was not surprised at the number of steps involved.

The first step, however, involved collecting 2 books- one that was a random spawn in a dungeon, and the other from a pvp battleground. I was immediately put off from my mission. I’m not great at pvp as it is. The thought of having to try and do something else during that pvp experience made me nervous. I mentioned this in guild, and was delighted to find out from a guildie that the book required (Nat Pagle’s Guide to Extreme Anglin’ ) was not bind on pick up. I was able to buy it from the Auction House! So off I went. Unfortunately, there were none available. I put a pin in my plans, and vowed to check each day to see if a book would appear on the AH. And the promptly forgot.

Then on Saturday, I remembered again that I wanted to do this, so off I went to the AH, and there is was! It wasn’t too expensive either, so I bought it immediately. The guide I was followed mentioned the next book I needed to get, A Thoroughly Read Copy of “Nat Pagle’s Guide to Extreme Anglin'”, was a rare spawn in Dire Maul. Paladins are so slow, so the guide suggested farming for this on a toon with lots of speed boosts, so I took my little Demon Hunter in, just for fun. I looked on the map to see some spawn points, and chose one at random. So off I went, and wouldn’t you know it, the book was right there!!! I found out afterwards that the spawn of the book had been made more common, so I felt a bit less lucky after that, but it did make things go faster.

Next up was a trip to Blackwing Lair for Nefarian’s Head. Unfortunately I didn’t score any pets or transmog, which was a little disappointing, but it passed quickly enough.


Next up it was back to my order hall, to speak with someone who might know about the books and what they’re talking about, Sister Elda. (The whole purpose of the chain is to figure out the story in the book, to find the Shard of Darkness that will corrupt Ashbringer (and give the appearance)).  Of course she sent me back to Dire Maul, where I spoke to Prince Tortheldrin. HE then sent me off to speak to someone else (I’m noticing a pattern here…)

As an Alliance I was sent to speak to Alexia Ironknife at Chillwind Camp.


No surprises here- she doesn’t know anything either, and send me off to read someone’s journal (bit personal, really!)

Guess what? Still no answers! All we get is a clue as to where the remains of someone may be found… in a grotty slime. Now this is the part where I expected to have to wait some time. I’d been told the spawn timer on the slime was really long. Despite that, I headed off to Thondroril River in Western Plaguelands. As expected, the slime wasn’t here. By this time my alt run was due to start, so I left her sitting near the spawn point, and off I went.

The next day I went about business as usual for quite awhile before remembering I was working on getting the skin (I really am getting quite forgetful!!). I logged on to my paladin, and wouldn’t you know it, the slime was right there in front of me!! I waited a few minutes and looked around to see if anyone else was waiting for the slime to spawn, but it appeared I was alone. So I (very slowly!) killed it, to get the next piece required.


The item the slime dropped was Timolain’s Phylactery. I used it be the river and spoke to Timolain the Accursed who revealed (dun dun duuuuunnnnn!!!) that the Shard of Darkness we were looking for was right there in the river somewhere! All we had to do was fish for it.


Now I had heard nightmares about this fishing part of the questline. I expected to be at this for hours, if not days. So I set myself up with some Netflix on one screen, and set about fishing. In a way I was almost a little disappointed when, less than 15 minutes later, the item dropped for me. Almost 😉


From here it was smooth sailing. I went back to my order hall to speak with Lord Maxwell Tyrosus (who was not at all impressed with my request to corrupt Ashbringer, let me tell you!!). But being obedient as he is, we went on a journey to the Death Knight order hall, Acherus, to undertake the corruption process.


I really liked this part of the quest line. Firstly, there’s something naughty about being in another class’s order hall, so it’s a bit of fun. Secondly, it was just really nicely done. Tyrosus is just not happy throughout the whole thing, and wanted to get out of there as quickly as possible. Me, on the other hand, well I was determined to get my light-ridden hands on everything hehehe! We meet with the Four Horsemen and convinced them to create the final piece – the Heart of Corruption.

They were a bit reluctant, but we convinced them in the end. I roamed around a little to try and explore, but the floor was blocked off and I couldn’t go anywhere else, which was a little disappointing, but not unexpected.

In the end I got Tyrosus out of there and back to the safety of the paladin order hall, where I learned the hidden appearance.


Of course the first thing I had to do was come up with a new transmog to match the appearance. I found some bright green pieces that I thought would work well…. and yeah there we are. Corrupted Ashbringer acquired.


I know I had it a lot easier than those who were working on this when it first came out, but I still had a lot of fun with it. I’m not sure that I’ll keep using the appearance. It’s great an all, but honestly I prefer the original. 😀

Now to figure out which appearance to get next.

~*~*~* This post contains spoilers for the Hunter class mount quest chain.~*~*~* 

One of my ongoing goals in game to have completed before the next expansion is to get all of the class mounts. I’ve been slowly but steadily making my way through levelling each class, then getting their mount/s. Today, I unlocked another, my hunter, bringing me up to 7 class mounts so far.

Levelling my hunter has really been quite the mission. Once I had finished levelling my priest and getting her mount, I was pretty much done with the classes that I play somewhat regularly (i.e. I’ll play them for fun, too, not just for mounts/achievements). Everything after my priest has been difficult. The toons themselves don’t have great gear (just baleful gear from WoD) and because I don’t know the classes well, they’re slow to level, and well… boring. But, I want all the mounts! So I persevered.

I decided my hunter would be next, not because I like the mount (it’s honestly one of my least favourites), but because the novelty of gnome hunters was still alive and well, so off Cinderling went. I started out levelling as Marksman because I like the weapon appearance, but to be honest it was pretty rubbish to level with, so I swapped over to Beastmaster, which proved to be a LOT better.

She dinged 110 a few days ago. Then it was off to the Broken Shore to get going on the Legionfall Campaign that would ultimately give me my mount. Cinderling had a much better time getting through this than other classes, because the pets just tanked for daaaays, so it all passed very quickly. Once I was done (earlier this morning) it was time to get my mount!WoWScrnShot_010218_145737

The quest line for the hunter mount was actually quite great. We receive an invitation from Odyn to take part in a great hunter feast (where hunters get to have a feast, not be the feast!) that takes place in the Field of the Eternal Hunt (where you go fight Fenryr in the Halls of Valor dungeon). The feast is by a beautiful warm fire and it’s all lovely with food everywhere. But then a “chosen one” (guess who!)is to go out into the darkness to hunt for spirit beasts to earn their favour.

So off I go.

The area is in pitch black darkness of night, with a sky full of stars. So pretty.


We need to track the beasts, so hunter tracking is on, and picks up some dots nearby. Rather than these being beasts, they are clues to take us to the beasts. Each of the clues glowed this translucent spirit-green colour.


So I followed the clues to each of the beasts. It felt a bit weird having to kill them… as if the spirit of the dead animal wanted to go through all of that death and pain again. So initially I wasn’t sure what to do when I saw the stag. But yes, kill him, I did. As well as the others.

Even though it was weird, they made for some really beautiful screen shots.


Once the first 4 beasts gave me their “blessing” another 2 “rare” beasts spawned (because I’m just that good at being a hunter!)


These fights were a little more difficult. In fact, they were a bit of fun, really! The beasts died… and then the super-ultra-rare beast appeared. And he was actually quite beautiful.


He also needed to be defeated (though I was quite glad that he didn’t actually die!). Odyn called me back and we had a giant piss-up for the rest of the night.

When Cinderling awoke in the hunter’s lodge a little while after, we went outside, and there was a saddle, sitting on a rock.


Clicking the saddle gave me the mount, Trust of a Loyal Wolfhawk, but not before we had a mini-cinematic (I’m really quite fond of these!)

And there we have it! Hunter class mount acquired! I actually swapped back over to my Marksman spec to do a quest for Artifact Power to get one of the other versions of the mount, the Trust of a Dire Wolfhawk. I haven’t even touched Survival, so will need to get that artifact weapon and level it up at some point in the future. But for now, I’m happy with these two 🙂


Part two of Topic 29: the 2017 wrap-up double challenge bonanza! 

The second challenge topic we had for December, to help wrap up the year, was to show one favourite screenshot for each month. I like this challenge, because I love taking screenshots (I have almost 3000 just from this year alone!!!) but boy is it a tough challenge choosing only one picture for each month. (ok so I may have cheated a little with the collage up top….). There’s so much exciting stuff that happens! BUT, a challenge is a challenge, so here we go.


There were a lot of beginnings in January (aside from it being the beginning of a new year). Firstly, this is when Pit Crew was born. It was supposed to be a new start for our raid team. And whilst things didn’t quite turn out that way, I do have fond memories of our first night in Nighthold, which also opened in January. My screenshots folder is PACKED full of pictures of the raid. It really was beautiful. January was also my first time in Karazhan, and also when we got our Arcanist’s Manasaber, for helping out the Nightbourne.

The screenshot I’ve chosen to share, though, is from my order hall. I chose this pic because it shows one of the things that I love most about WoW- the little things. These two NPCs are actually part of ~*~*SPOILER ALERT~*~*~ the restoration shaman artifact quest line. They’re not here all the time, they just stop by from time to time. And they are just adorable. Adelee is trying to teach Grash how to dance. It’s absolutely adorable. And like I said, is the little things that I love about this game. 🙂WoWScrnShot_011817_180459.jpeg


February gave me Experiment 12-B, completed Brawler’s Guild, a ghost moose, and a bunch of raiding achievements. It was also the month I wrote about being harassed online, and was also the month someone in game randomly saw me and whispered me to tell me they enjoyed my blog.

The pic I’ve chosen to share is from when I get my Arcane mage hidden artifact appearance. This whole quest chain was hilarious. And I just adore farmer Cinderlily with her sheep followers!



We went back to the Broken Shore in March, I “discovered” places in Dalaran that have always existed (I’d just never seen them!), I got extremely lucky with loot drops (hidden appearances, legendaries and mounts, oh my!), and bought myself Yu’lei. I also spent a bit of time levelling my priest, got all my hidden appearances for my mage, and took a whole bunch of screenshots of the Cathedral of Eternal Night. I also wrote a few posts in March, my favourite being where I designed my own zone in WoW.

This pic for March, though, is of myself with 4 other lovely ladies I’m so fortunate enough to call friends. Each month (or as often as we can!) myself, Leeta, Natanie, Miggi & MrsO all get together just just hang out in chat and play some games together. Sometimes we run dungeons together, other times we’ll do invasions or old raid runs or even try our hands at Overwatch or Heroes of the Storm. But no matter what we do, we always have a great time, and I’m so glad to know them. ❤



April was “quieter” because I got a new job, so had less time to play. But I still managed to squeeze in an awful lot! It was the month of mounts: I got my fox mount, the Valajar Stormwing, the Leywoven Flying Carpet and I found the Long-Forgotten Hippogryph. We also got to solve some riddles to get a new (to be honest, pretty ugly) mount!

Other than all the mounts, we killed a whole bunch of mythic bosses in Nighthold, and I spent a looooong time bashing my head against the Mage Tower challenge (and not getting it at that time!).

The most fun thing that happened in April was the Inky Black Potion. Everyone went bananas for it, and it’s not hard to see why. I flew all around Azeroth and took a LOT of screenshots with that potion.

We also got to play with baby murlocs, in what was one of the most adorable micro-holidays of the year.



I spent a fair bit of time with my paladin in May, getting her levelled up and finishing her class hall story. We had two micro-holidays that I attended- the Spring Balloon Festival, and the Glowcap Festival. It was also the month I got my Ratstallion mount, and when we started working on mythic Gul’dan.

During this month, we also learned of a little murloc pet, Squirky, who could be captured off the coast of Azsuna, on a very small island full of very strong murlocs. I was extremely lucky when I went to get a Squirky of my own- the lighting was absolutely spectacular, leading to the picture below. I think it looks like a painting. Those cotton candy clouds are just divine!



Class mounts became available in June. I really enjoyed the quest line to get my shaman mount. Oh and what a mount it is! I also headed off to get my mage her class mount, too. I took part in the Running of the Trolls for the first time this year, and it was a lot of fun. Our raid team killed mythic Gul’dan AND mythic Helya – and all of this is just in the first 2 weeks of the month!

I spent some more time levelling a priest, brought Dog to Dalaran, and helped save Chromie. I also followed the clues to get my own Sun Darter Hatchling (which I wrote about here). Tomb of Sargeras took up the bulk of June, though. I took SO many screenshots of that raid. I really enjoyed everything about it. It felt like it had a proper story that contributed to the overall narrative of the expansion. I loved that completing the raid changed the physical world around us. The picture I’ve chosen, for me, represents everything we’re fighting for this expansion- our home (for me, Stormwind) and to stop the Burning Legion.



In July I got to raid with my lovely friends Zee & Neuro again for awhile (though the poor things really did not have a good time with us… things were not great at the time 😦 ) I got myself a Wild Dreamrunner mount and the Paladin and druid class mounts. I even went to visit Faeb, just to say hi. It’s also the month I got my beautiful new PC, Alice!

The highlight for July, though, was hands down *finally* completing the Mage Tower challenge on my resto shaman. I had given up for quite some time as I had gotten so, so frustrated with it. But I stuck to it, and finally got the darn thing. And I felt very accomplished indeed.



We had the Trial of Style in August, and it was a LOT of fun, and I managed to get the Remember to Share achievement, which gave me yet another mount.

However, without a doubt, the biggest thing to happen in August was going to Argus. Not only did we get to explore this world we have heard so much about… but we got to see a whole other side to Azeroth. It hit me right in the feels, this pic.



Another month of mounts, artifact challenge and hidden appearances, and of course, raiding. But easily the most defining moment in September was, after hours of running and and searching a seemingly endless maze, finally seeing this treasure box at the end of it all (and of course getting the Lucid Nightmare mount). I had intended to write about my experience getting this mount, but it was also around this time that my blog went down for extended maintenance, so I didn’t get to. For what it is worth- I absolutely LOVED getting this mount 😀



I ran with gnomes, got more hidden artifact appearances, and got my little priest her class mount. It was a lot of “alts” time that month, just ticking off the achievements.

We also had Hallow’s End, where I got to fly around like a sexy maniacal pumpkin! WoWScrnShot_102017_221050.jpg


It’s always all about Blizzcon in November, with everyone flying around in their Blizzcon class mounts. It was also WoW’s birthday, so of course there was lots of alt-levelling here, too, including getting my Monk her class mount.

November was also the month that the guild fell apart. Again. It was particularly sad and painful this time around, because we wanted it to work so much. But some personalities just don’t mesh well, and we split up and went our separate ways.

But on a happier note, November had the Moonkin Festival, which was ADORABLE. I loved having my very own moonkin squad! 😀WoWScrnShot_111217_225231.jpg


And here we are at the end of the year. December has given us yet another stunningly beautiful raid, Antorus. Again, a fabulous raid that really brings the story together. It’s also the first raid with our rebuilt team, Realm. So far, things are going really well, I think. It’s not perfect, but the imperfections aren’t as sour as they were previously. The people are great. Just so great. I’m so fortunate to have such a wonderful group of people in my life. And it’s for that reason that, even though history shows otherwise, I think we’ll work as a team. I have to have hope that it will.

So I end this series with a hopeful picture for you all. WoWScrnShot_121017_134442.jpg


Like I said, this was hard. There are far too many picture to choose from each month. But if I chose them all, we’d be here forever. I hope you liked the images I chose, though!

So that’s it for December, and 2017! Thank you to every person who has ever stumbled across my little blog, and an extra special thanks to anyone who has liked or commented. It means the world to me that you read my silly words.

May 2018 be full of love and hope and laughter, and all the things that make you happy.


PS: Ok one last one because I can’t help myself! I just really love this pic!!



We’ve put up two challenges for the rest of December over at Z and Cinder’s Blog Challenge. Partly because we couldn’t decide what order to post them in, and partly (ok mostly!) because we’re just so busy these days that we didn’t want to miss the topics entirely because somehow 2 weeks passed by and we didn’t even realise it… SO! The first topic is the one I’m taking on today, and that is Return to Your Bucket List.

Back at the beginning of 2017 we had a challenge for everyone to make a bucket list for the year. It could be as big or as small as people wanted, as long as it had a goal people wanted to achieve for the year. So let’s see how I did with my list, shall we?

Cutting Edge – all raids* – not quite

(The * disclaimer on this is if 7.2 dropped in December. Well, 7.2 didn’t drop in December, but 7.3 with Antorus released November 30, so it’s fair to say that one doesn’t count towards this.)

This shouldn’t have been as difficult as it was… unfortunately 2017 turned out to be the year of the guild dramas. Technically I’ve been in 3 different guilds this year. Though to be fair they have consisted of a lot of the same people. But all this guild instability meant that raiding took a hit, and we just didn’t get the progression that I wanted this year.

Having said that, we didn’t do terribly. We did get Cutting Edge for Helya in Trial of Valor, and Gul’dan in The Nighthold. But unfortunately we were too far off getting it in Tomb of Sargeras, only getting 7/9Mythic bosses down. Still a really great achievement, but disappointing to miss out on Cutting Edge.

So far in Antorus we’re doing alright. Again, we’ve been plagued by guild dramas (why can’t everyone just be nice to each other and get along?!?!?!) so we’re only sitting a 2/11Mythic, but we’ve got time, and I have hope.

Get my class mount* – yes!

(The disclaimer for this one was based on not knowing when the mounts themselves would be available. Class mounts came out in patch 7.2, which dropped at the end of March). 

This one was easily achieved. Shortly before the patch came out the requirements to get the mount were lessened, making it even easier.

The questline to get the shaman mount really was a lot of fun. And the mount itself is AWESOME!! I love that there are different colourings of it for each spec.

But, not only have I got the shaman class mount, I also have the class mounts for my mage, paladin, druid, priest and monk- huzzah!

There will be a bit of a lull now as I start to level the classes that I don’t enjoy playing so much. I currently have my hunter at 107, my rogue at 103 and my warrior at 102. My warlock, demon hunter and death knight have only opened up their order halls. I should really get in there and get them at least one champion to help do some missions… might try and get that done over Christmas break.

Complete Family Familiar Achievement – yes!

I did it! At the end of May I finally finished this achievement. It was a hard slog, especially at the end when it came down to waiting for specific battles to spawn, and they just wouldn’t! But I got there in the end, and this little treant fellow became my newest companion. 🙂 Family_Familiar.jpg

Attend all the micro-holidays – almost

Unfortunately I missed the Thousand Boat Bash. But I did manage to make it to all of the others! It’s hard to choose a favourite, because each one had something fun and unique about it. I suppose Call of the Scarab had the least appeal to me, having not played when AQ40 opened up and what not. The Hatching of the Hippogryphs was flippin’ adorable, as was the March of the Tadpoles! Oh that one was so much fun. And Trial of Style was loads of fun, too (I see that’s coming back in March, so might have a more regular rotation than once a year!)

As expected, the micro-holidays are as much fun as I’d hoped they would be. They’re just a really fun thing to do every now and again. I had lovely moments with some new guildies recently doing the Moonkin Festival- we ended up having a moonkin dance party in raid! It was great 🙂

Most of all, though, what I really love about the micro-holidays is seeing so many large groups of people hanging out and doing silly things in game. It’s just awesome.

Level 3 more toons to 110 – yes!

When I set this goal, I was actually thinking I was going easy on myself at the time. I honestly expected pretty much all of my alts to be at 110 by now. What I (and many others!) didn’t know at the time was just how fast Blizzard would be bringing out new content this expansion. It was been a regular stream of content thrown at us. And whilst it has been AMAZING having all these things to do, it has meant that my poor alts have suffered.

Even still, I have do have 5 alts at 110- they’re the 5 classes I mentioned above that have the class mounts, too. But I’m a long way from being done. Having said that, I exceeded my goal of 3, so I’m happy with that!

Get the Brawler’s Guild mount – yes!

Surprisingly this was one of the first things I managed to tick off of my bucket list, completing this in February. I’m always really nervous about going in to Brawler’s Guild because I’m scared I’ll get laughed at for being rubbish (which has never happened, by the way!). Anyway, I just said to myself I had to get over that, and went in there and worked through all the fights over the course of a weekend. There are some really great fights in there. I’m not good at going in to those things blind, so I did a little bit of reading before each fight which helped. The last boss was fantastic- Ray D. Tear was his name and had every ability from the Hellfire Citadel raid. It was completely bonkers, but SO much fun!


And that’s it! Overall, I’ve been a lot more successful with my list than I expected. The only thing that really let me down was the raiding situation, and in a lot of ways that’s just out of my hands as it relies on so many people to get it done. But I’m happy with my year. 🙂

How was yours?!


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