Khadon’s Journey

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Over the long holiday weekend I was blessed with (I “worked from home” on Monday and work was closed Tuesday) I did a lot of work on Khadon here.  You can see his new transmog above, and also I changed his fur color to be all white and lopped off his horns.

I also changed his spec to Guardian and OMFG I have fallen in love with bear tanking again. I hadn’t done it since Wrath, but over the past weekend I got several dungeon quests and decided to go for it!  I thought about speccing restoration and trying to heal, but didn’t really feel like healing. I could have stayed Feral or gone Balance and DPS’d but I’ve always been reluctant. Everyone has DPS meters and everyone looks at them. I am not a very strong player and so am almost always trailing in last place when it comes to damage. So I decided to buck up the courage to tank.

Tanking is something that I did for a time in Wrath of the Lich King.  There is some general consensus that Wrath was extremely easy when it came to heroic dungeons, and I was able to faceroll through them without much skill. Back then bear tanking meant spamming one ability (swipe) and occasionally using growl if you lost aggro on something, and every now and then using Frenzied Regeneration if your health started to go down.

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I never had the courage to try again after Wrath, though there was also the fact that with Cataclysm came the rare tamable hunter pets. I became obsessed with them and camped them and played my hunter. I did a lot of RP in Cata, and so never really used my druid or got around to tanking again.

After that I heard that the difficulty had increased, and I was too scared to try again.  Jump forward to the present and my class order hall campaign requires doing all the dungeons (and each zone also ends in one or two dungeon quests that finish out the story). Rather than being annoyed that the quest lines and stories require dungeon content, I actually feel it was nicely done. For example, throughout the zone of Highmountain you follow the plight of the Hightmountain tauren tribe as they are raided and attacked by a faction of underground trogg type things, the chieftain of which has stolen a mighty tribal artifact, the hammer of a heroic Tauren of legend, the powers of which he is using the cause a fair amount of devastation. This culminates in you facing the enemy as the final boss of a dungeon and it feels very rewarding to return said hammer to it’s rightful place.

So, wanting to actually do the dungeons, see the story, and also wanted to challenge myself, I decided to attempt to tank. I didn’t just pop into the dungeon finder though and give it a whirl, I did my research first.

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I did my research. I went to this in-depth guide on being a druid tank. I also went to youtube and watched a few in-depth tutorials on rotation. Lastly I downloaded a few addons to help me out. I finally got around to using WeakAuras. I’d heard a lot about it, I’d seen it on lists of must-have addons, but it always seemed too complex and complicated for me. But I got it, found some help on using it, and set it up to track my cooldowns.

I then spent the better part of an hour practicing my rotation on the target dummies. Let me share with you what I have learned (I’ve drilled it in so well I can relate it from memory!)

For Single Target I start with Moonfire, then taunt, then Thrash, then Mangle. For multi target I believe it is Moonfire, Thrash, Mangle, then swipe.  For moth I use Thrash and Mangle on cooldown, using swipe when there is nothing else to do, and cast Moonfire whenever it procs (or to keep it up).

That part is easy. My struggle comes with the stuff that requires a bit more skill. I am supposed to keep moonfire up on all targets, which is something I find difficult to do. I don’t bother for trash because they generally die before I can do that. But trying to tab across all targets and moonfire them isn’t easy.

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The other struggle comes when knowing when to use my various damage mitigation abilities. The main one is Ironfur, and I use it basically whenever I have the rage to. Survival Instincts and Barkskin I am supposed to use when I know big damage is coming. I’ll just need to learn the fights to do that. Deadly Boss Mods helps with some, but not all.  Frenzied Regeneration is easy, I use that after I’ve taken big damage, and one of my Weak Auras shows me how much it will go off for (it’s based on how much damage I took).

However, I wouldn’t be able to practice that as well on target dummies as I could in an actual fight, so there was nothing left for it but to jump into the dungeon queue and give it a try!  I did 4 dungeons in a row, we didn’t wipe though I was pretty slow. No one seemed to get too annoyed. In 2 of the dungeons there was one person who would go ahead and pull for me. I didn’t mind as it gave me practice trying to gain the aggro from someone else. I felt I was able to do pretty well.

I used my Ironfur as much as possible, and when Deadly Boss Mods told me something was happening I used Survival Instricts, or my Artifact Weapon ability. When I took big damage I used my Frenzied Regen. I did not attempt to sprinkle Moonfire around all the mobs. I know it’s something I’ll need to do, but not in normals, and it will give me time to practice all the other stuff first.

I had a blast! Despite being slow, and despite making some mistakes, it was fun both learning to play the class and doing the dungeons themselves. So as I progress through the zones and need to do the dungeons in order to complete the story, I won’t have any problems.

Perhaps also, when the time comes and my character is max level, I can start doing heroics and maybe even gearing up for raids. My current RP guild is pretty big, and active in PvE as well. Just last night they did some mythic dungeons together. I of course wasn’t able to go, I’m not max level yet and don’t have the gear yet. But I have no doubts that in a few weeks when I do they might take me along.

I’ve also enjoyed questing as a guardian druid. Last night I got a quest to kill 7 of some kind of creature. I ran into the area, gathered up 7 of them, and was able to survive while I killed them all. It took a little while, I had to pop a couple of cooldowns, but I managed it, and it was a lot quicker than killing them one at a time. I also never really went below 50% health and was able to get myself back up pretty quickly. It was a blast.

Also, the guardian druid artifact weapon (those claws) look bad ass.

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So what of RP?

Well I developed Khadon’s story and character. It is neither entirely unique or all that spectacular. It’s a bit cliche.

As a young druid (in Highmountain) Khadon was just learning his forms. He had learned to shift into bear and cat, and enjoyed going out at night to run through the mountain forests as an animal.  It was on such a jaunt that he was found by a warlock (orc maybe?). The Warlock thought the druid would make an excellent watch dog.

So he captured the druid, and used magic on him to wipe his memory of his family and tribe. He also cut off his antlers (high mountain tauren have moose antlers instead of horns) so he would never know where he came from (he still doesn’t, all this is entirely player knowledge and will never be known by Khadon or anyone ICly). Once completely brainwashed Khadon was set to guard his “master” at all times.

The warlock was studying demonology specifically, summoning demons of greater and greater strength and pitting Khadon against some of them for sport. Khadon was charged with killing anyone who came too close to the cave lair of the Warlock.

One day the Warlock (who Khadon knew only as Master) summed too large a demon to control. It killed the Warlock. Khadon hid in fear, and when the demon left he realized he was free.  He would survive in the wilds for a time, mostly as an animal, before approaching a tauren village out of curiosity and a desire to know others of his kind.

It is then that he met the Wolfmane Tribe (the guild I am now in) and was accepted into their ranks.

Personality wise Khadon is gruff, not very smart, and easily enraged. He is fiercely loyal when it comes to protecting people because that is all he knows. Even though the warlock was kind of a jerk for capturing Khadon and brainwashing him, he wasn’t exactly cruel. He trained/raised Khadon to enjoy fighting, and so Khadon enjoyed the challenge of fighting the demons, and he protected his Warlock master because that is what he was raised to do.

He doesn’t talk a lot, has great respect for anyone of strong physical prowess, and eats anything in his path.

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There’s a look at his transmog front and back. Notice the horns that end in gold caps (I wish they could be steel or something instead). His clothing is meant to look pretty bestial, like someone who doesn’t like to be restricted by clothing.

I chose for him to have white fur just because it’s interesting. It’s not uncommon, a lot of tauren go that route (though more females then males, there is one other white male tauren in the guild).

The Wolfmane tribe accepts non-tauren into the guild. They only refuse certain races and classes that associate themselves with fel, undead, or powerhungry natures. Undead and Death Knights are not allowed, because undeath to tauren is against the ancestors. Warlocks, and Demon Hunters are not allowed due to their connection to the Fel. Blood Elves are a bit frowned upon due to their power-hungry nature, but there is at least one Blood Elf in the guild that I know of.  Everyone else is welcome, though it is mostly Tauren.

I decided to go ahead and start questing with Khadon rather than waiting for my priest to unlock flying. I wanted to play Khadon and was willing to do it without the benefit of flight in order to be able to play him.

As I said before I downloaded a few addons, and one is called “Immersion.” It takes the normal quest pop-up that look like parchment pages of a book with tiny writing and makes them into larger pop-ups on the bottom of the screen with moving portraits of whoever you’re speaking to. It makes it easier to read the quest text and makes me more willing to read it and thus enjoy the story of the quest, whereas before I’d just accept the quest rather than read the tiny writing on the parchment paper.

I also got various addons that make the UI more sleek, and less obtrusive, so I can get great views of my surroundings, and it all comes up/appears when combat starts.

So far Khadon has gone through Val’Sharah and explored the corruption of the Emerald Dream by the Satyrs. He aided Tyrande Whisperwind to find her husband Malfurian who was stolen by the Satyr leader, and even got to ride on the back of Ysera herself. I wont spoil the ending of that zone but it did make me tear up.

Now he is on to Stormheim, land of the Vykrul. So far he has aided Sylvanus Whisperwind in landing there, though she has dissipated on her own mission, he has been approached by an elder of the Vykrul who wants his help. I look forward to exploring the story of that zone this week.

I’ll probably do Azsuna next, and then Highmountain after as I want to save the best for last. Though the true best is Suramar which I haven’t completed on my Priest so don’t know the story of that yet. I do have some screenshots of the Suramar city which are spectacular. This is one of the best cities I’ve ever seen in a video game, and surely the best in WoW.

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Khadon is already level 106. Here is a link to his armory page. I will most definitely reach 110 before getting to Suramar, I may reach it before getting to Azsuna, but I intend to do each zone regardless. Mostly because I’ll need to in order to unlock flying. But once I get to 110 I should be able to also open world quests, which will help with the rep grind.

I’ll finish Suramar before going to the Broken Shores and grinding that out.  It’ll take some time but I look forward to it. I’ll of course RP throughout, and once I finish broken shores and all that and unlock flying and finish my class campaign I’ll do the Death to Chromie bit, apparently the story is fantastic.

One thing I really want to do is a challenge that unlocks a werebear form for the guardian druid.

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Doesn’t that look awesome? I really want it, but apparently it is extremely challenging. People struggle with it even highly geared and with legendaries, so I may never be able to get it. But it looks sweet and I do want to at least TRY. There are guides and stuff online.  There is one guide here that I’ll probably use, but it recommends getting legendary items first. I’m not sure how to go about getting those but we’ll see!

Anyway, that’s where I am at now in my current WoW obsession. RP has been a blast, druid guardian is super fun, and Khadon’s character is coming together. 🙂

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