Category Archives: Scenery

A specialized Rogues Gallery

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I’m not generally one to patronize streamers – hot tub or otherwise – or other people that just talk to a camera, offer to write your name on their head, or change outfits for money (one assumes off camera but I’m not falling for that one again).

But one kind of people I’m always glad to help out when I can are those that do things – I mean, real things, things you can download and view and stuff. Artists fit right into this category. Kruithne is one of those artists that also does software and other interesting work. They do a lot of on-commission 3D art of WoW characters and, coincidentally, is one of the few 3D artists that also shares information on how they do the deed, albeit behind a Patron paywall (obviously not an issue for me).

It was that knowledge that drew me in, so I joined the Patron for what I could afford and immediately gained knowledge (mind you, the procedure they provided blew up my Python install, but, being a steely eyed Python boi, I was able to get that squared away).

Creation of WoW 3D art outside of the model viewer is not an easy or trivial task, but Kruithne works hard to make it achievable if you put a little effort into it. As a techie, as a former 3D artist in another era, and as a WoW fanboi, I highly recommend them and encourage you to throw a few gp into the till.

To my surprise and delight, recently we patrons got a bonus, an artwork with all of the first 100 patrons (that wanted to be) in it, as a group photo.

Can you spot the Grimmtooth?

https://www.kruithne.net/home/files/patreon/art/patrons-1080.png

Unfavorites

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Every expansion has it – that zone you just can’t stand. Sometimes it has zones you like as well – but, for me, the latter is less cluttered than the former.

In Shadowlands, well, there’s The Maw, but, I think we can all agree that it was designed to make us miserable so, yeah, mission accomplished. Go home early this week, Maw designers, you nailed it.

Aside from that, though, I have to say that most of the other SL zones get on my nerves, too. I can’t stand Revendreth, can barely tolerate Maldraxxus and Ardenweald, and mostly live with Bastion – but none are zones I particularly like.

What is it that makes me dislike a zone?  I can say that mostly it’s vertical space. Nothing irks me more than seeing a quest just in front of me and yet I’m standing at the top or base of a cliff. It’s annoying and frustrating.  And Revendreth – well, it’s all vertical spaces.

Another thing that annoys me is a lot of cover.  Heavily forested zones where tree branches are constantly getting in the way of your view just bug me.

That also begs the question – what zones do I actually LIKE based on that?  Obviously, those that provide a mostly flat and uncovered vista.  In that light, Nagrand (old school, but WoD version is also decent) is possibly my all time favorite. I realize it has some vertical spaces but they’re accessible for the most part.  Twilight Highlands, Classic Loch Modan, and Dun Morogh all figure big on this scale. Surprisingly, Ashenvale also is up there, even though it’s covered.  In this case the cover is all very tall trees, not the low lying ones in places like Elwynn.

Some that meet this criteria fall off the scale for other reasons. For example, I’ve never liked the aesthetics of Westfall in any of its incarnations and, while it has many fine features, Barrens (classic) is just so far away and hostile as to make it kind of a drag.

I can’t claim to be consistent, but I can claim to have an opinion. Smile

Hard Times in Bastion

Bastion bothers me.

A friend of mine on Twitter noticed this first, but I’ve seen it, too.  There’s something like a place that makes you shed your identity and turn into a person identical to all of the other people around you of the same gender a bit unnerving. And the words used by these people remind me of a, of a … well, this.

https://pics.me.me/thumb_were-not-a-cult-were-an-organisation-that-promotes-love-65629151.png

And then there’s this.

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Here we have one of the cult members (circled, to the far right) “shedding his memories” (all the other circles).  You can see that this blue dude is actually in past life a Tauren, and his memories of his past are deemed “burdens”.

They should have named it “definitely not a cult land”.

Now, a certain major lore character that you saw in one of the animated shorts (not spoiling it) has started a counter cultural movement, and I have to say, while they’re being portrayed as the baddies, I’m kinda rooting for them.

It may be pretty here, but it’s just horrible.

Looks smaller from above

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One of the little secrets of Vanilla was that there were three Stormwinds.

There was the Stormwind you saw when you approached from outside.

There was the Stormwind you saw from within the city.

And there was the city you saw when flying by.

One gimmick they could pull off this way was to make Stormwind Keep look ENOURMOUS.  I’m not even sure what that is behind the gate – a hill? But at any rate, the thing fades into the mist from the streets outside the Trade District.  In Retail, it’s a lot less imposing, because in Retail, there’s only one Stormwind.  And that doesn’t allow them to engage in any of those nifty little tricks of perspective.

It is Done

flying bfa

Tonight I started at just over 2,000 reputation short of being Revered with the Mechagon Trudgniks. I wasn’t expecting to get all that rep in one night, but the “find the chests” WQ was up so I popped it with a quest to spare.

So I’m flying in the current content once again.  I wish I could say it wasn’t a slog this time, but it really felt like a slog.  This “pathfinder” business started, what, in Draenor? I think it was Draenor.  And the funny thing is, it took a month, grinding as fast as I could.  I think it took less time in Legion, and it definitely took less than a month this time.

But it FELT like a slog through two pointless rep grinds.

I wonder if others feel the same way about the duration and pointfulness.

It’s funny, in that it feels like it was deliberately time-gated to drag things out. But if it takes less than a couple of weeks before you see people zipping around on flying mounts, how much of a delay was it?

I know I’m not alone when I say that I feel that Blizz is introducing time-wasting content to try to engage players longer – by “engage” I mean “engage players in time wasting activities”.

Okay, listen. Nobody’s kidding anyone here. Of COURSE they’re trying to drag things out, keep you involved longer without any real reward.

But what Blizz needs to do at this point is maybe put more effort into making it look less like they are.

Next up: something like 1000 manapearls to max out my benthic gear.  And maybe by then they’ll have new content.

Qua Taelia

If you’re Alliance, you’ve met Taelia, agent of Kul Tiras, Fury warrior par excellence, and giver of some of the best stinkeye I’ve ever seen in-game.

 

 

 

There is a big spoiler near the end of the main arc in this the initial stage of the expansion, so I won’t ruin it if you prefer to stay … unruined.  Turn thy virgin eyes aside, and come back after you find out … well, you’ll know.

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They gone?  Man, what a pain.  But here we are.

Anyway, as you may at this point know, Taelia’s full name is Taelia Fordragon, daughter of Bolvar Fordragon, who was last seen atop the Frozen Throne in Northrend.

Blizzwatch has already had a shot at what that means for purposes of her upcoming lore – i.e. she thinks daddy’s dead, nobody’s told her, this can only end in tears, that sort of thing.

But from the moment I saw her and Anduin Wrynn in the room together, I knew: this has to happen.

Yes, I know that Flynn’s carrying a torch for her.

I also get that Flynn is the Jack Sparrow in the Jack Sparrow / Elizabeth / Whelp sammich, and I think that Anduin is the Whelp in this case.

 

Yes, Blizz does tend to borrow from others and embellish, why do you ask.

Anyway.

  1. Anduin’s gonna need a queen.
  2. A Fordragon would be a fabulous choice.
  3. It would unite Lorderon and Stormwind once and for all, with a side of Kul Tiras.
  4. He’s a priest, she’s a warrior (maybe she can spec change to tank).
  5. jaina

    Come here, little king. Want some candy?

    Jaina’s a bit old for him (back off, cougar lady).

  6. Moira would be just wrong. Shadow and Holy? G’wan.

You see where I’m headed here?

Now, it’s possible, with the whole Bolvar the Lich King thingy going on, that Taelia will Go Dark at some point.

I figure we have a 50/50 chance of that, and a 50/50 chance of Anduin going dark. And I just can’t really get into the whole king-going-dark-for-the-dozenth-time thing again, so it’s possible that, if Jaina doesn’t grow a mustache to twirl, that Taelia will be taken from us, go rogue and go after Daddy Dearest or something weird like that.  The sort of thing that happens every other day in Warcraft.

But I hope not. We’re running out of good lore characters, and we need some interesting ones to take their place. But I’m worried because Taelia’s model is just basically a player character model with little to know real upgrades, making it appear that she’s not going to last the expansion out.

Anyway.

I have shipped Anduin Wrynn and Taelia Fordagon, and there’s nothing you can do about it.  Thanks for attending my TED talk.

 

Might be a long wait

Mrs Grimm noticed on her hordie that the zep to Undercity was missing, and there was just a portal there now.  On a hunch, I sped my way to Stormwind harbor, to see what there was to see of the boat to Teldrassil. Yep, it was gone, too.

I kindly /tell’d the person waiting for the boat to take the portal behind the ballista , and as I did so, I heard a ship’s bell, and this happened.

where's the boat

Those two guards and their prisoner just appeared out of nowhere, and are headed off to the stockades.

Aside from where’s-the-boat, the other pressing question is why are Alliance troopers toting obviously Human prisoners from Teldrassil?

Something about Genn

While waiting for the login issues to clear up, I noticed something a little odd.  It involves Genn Greymane.

In the opening cinematic, Old Wolf is in his canine form during the battle; counseling Anduin, getting beat up, getting major healz, that sort of thing. We get a few good close ups of ol’ snaggle-puss, and then I noticed it.

Genn's Tooth Jewelry

See it? I circle’d and arrow’d it in case you miss it.

Old Wolf has tusk jewelry, like an Orc might have.

So what happens to it when he changes back to human form?  His big goofy duster coat stays the same. What about the jewelry? (and noting a lot in his hairy earlobes, too).

And he’s what, around 100 years old now?  Pretty spry, isn’t he?

I’m telling you, there’s something a bit OFF about Genn Greymane.

Vinettes, One Expansion Late

I was over in Nagrand looking for an Inscription recipe and couldn’t resist the chance to take a selfie with a national landmark.

Garrosh and Gromash.png

SPOILER ALERT: Yes, I did.

Also I hocked it.

Geography is weird

Every notice how close together Karazhan and Zul’Gurub actually are?  It isn’t obvious from the ground, but when flying in over the mountains from the Blasted Lands it sure is!

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