I know a ton of people aren’t following my classic trip, but it has been fun, so I wanted to just put a little bit out there, mutter a little bit on what I’ve been doing and how it’s going, and what might be going on the in the future!
Never the Same Stream Twice.
There are many things these days that trigger that nostalgic rush that comes with approaching your childhood with a new set of eyes, a different perspective, and circumstances that are often markedly changed from where you once stood. Transformers, Star Wars, and many other bits of our bygone years have been resurrected for us, in a very Frankensteinian way that doesn’t always meet the expectations we now have as adults.
WoW Classic’s approach to the game is a bit different, one in which it is preserved very akin to an interactive museum piece, albeit one where the rest of the exhibit is other people, and you have to be mindful that they are also here to enjoy the product.
The community surrounding WoW Classic is the thing that has changed the most, to be honest, from web knowledge, guides and videos providing more information than ever before on the methods the game employs all the way through to using Discord Voice chat for many parties and groups to better coordinate, the people who play the game today are more capable of understanding and consuming the content than they were in ’04-’06. This has created a very different environment for the nostalgia than when it existed in its first iteration years ago, but it is still an extremely enjoyable game, and that I find a great connection to many people I don’t get to see regularly and get to hear their voice and hang out, though superficially, for a little while. Its been great.
The First days
The first days and weeks were wild. there were amazing and bizarre experiences, especially playing as horde when I’d only played Alliance in retail. the Private Server experience gave me some level of preparation, but nothing to this level. It was insane and crowded, and even weeks later, when I was making my way up the early levels, I would come across scenes where it was obvious that people had been here recently, and I was about to embark on a dangerous and deadly task.
As I climbed my way up the ladder, I knew I loved instances and that I wanted to Tank all of them on the path to 60, and, except for the two non-horde ones, I did. Making sure I got the most out of each of the Dungeons also helped, as I picked up good quests and good rewards along the way.
Ragefire Chasm – 13-18
Wailing Caverns – 15-25
The Deadmines – 18-23
Shadowfang Keep – 22-30
The Stockade – 22-30
Blackfathom Deeps – 24-32
Gnomeregan – 29-38
Razorfen Kraul – 30-40
Scarlet Monastery: Graveyard: 28-38
Scarlet Monastery: Library: 29-39
Scarlet Monastery: Armory: 32-42
Scarlet Monastery: Cathedral: 35-45
Razorfen Downs – 40-50
Uldaman – 42-52
Zul’Farrak – 44-54
Maraudon: Wicked Grotto (Purple): 45-53
Maraudon: Foulspore Cavern (Orange): 45-53
Maraudon: Earth Song Falls (Inner): 48-57
The Temple of Atal’Hakkar – 50-60
Blackrock Depths – 52-60
Each of these, which is in opposition to the general Private Server knowledge, but in line with my hazy memory, were great places to stock up on XP and get to know a few people.
The first 40 levels were fairly slow, what with not having amount, and the economy on the server wasn’t one flush with cash and attempting to power level professions, and was instead focused on getting to 60 and getting the money for an epic mount fairly quickly, which means that having money for your mount was extremely tight. Being a warrior, that meant that I was going to be skipping out on a lot of abilities simply to afford a stupid horse. There were sacrifices to be made, and honestly, I paid them gladly and openly because at the end of the day, to be able to hit 40 and then run out to the stables and pop on my zombie horse immediately was thrilling.
Following the footrace to 40, which I was pretty bad at, to be completely honest, the grind from 40 to 50 was a real, well, grind. I was able to access more zones and get around easier, but it didn’t seem to help for a while. Then, once I hit 50, the home stretch felt really, really good. It is harder, these days, what with Lights Hope and Silithus both having yet to be implemented as full quest hubs, but it was possible with some runs of BRD and making sure that I did every quest possible. I even took down the emperor for the first time that I remember, in classic.
That is one of the things that pulled me back into Classic. It was the chance to experience and complete the events that I simply didn’t have the discipline, time or desire to complete were once again open to me to complete in their first iteration.
There was a lot to do, and I was pretty judicious in making sure I took the time to do everything that was offered and out there. Thankfully this Pokemon attitude left me, at the end of the day, Hitting 60 via exploration XP on the way to Lights Hope to start picking up quests there, so I have all those quests to complete for a little extra cash at 60.
Following hitting 60, I knew I wanted to try and get doing the events I’d never been able to in Launch, and over the course of a few weeks, I made it a priority to come to grips with the stats I needed and where to get them. I started running the required dungeons to get the gear, and though it took more than a few runs, I started closing in.
But, I had hit 60 at a strange time in the game, just as Battlegrounds were coming out – it had taken me just under a month and just under over 10 days played to make it through. I became fixated on getting my wolf mount, both because I didn’t think I’d have enough gold (which ended up being false) and I didn’t think that I really wanted another horse. I put in, I believe, 3 weeks of Alterac Valley games with probably thousands of others in order to grab exalted and get both the Frostwolf Howler and Don Julio’s band.
At the same time, I magically snagged a spot raiding with a bunch of excellent, experienced people who were, more or less, able to guide me through the fights as we made our way through. One day I’ll write a guide – because that is what we need more of, right?
I’m not going to lie. It was thrilling to experience these fights within the confines of their original strictures. I know, its not the same as it was back then, and the experience of grinding down one boss at a time, and slowly figuring out what needed to be done to defeat them, and it’s not the same as being under-geared and overwhelmed and unable to progress because you didn’t know how the game actually worked in its deep guts. Still, it was thrilling to me because I’d never been here. I’d never been able to sit with 40 people and even try to take down Ragnaros and Onyxia, especially when they were “current Content” and there weren’t any other raids to do.
It was charming, in a way, and I really felt that rush of success on achieving a goal that I’d set. It wasn’t one that was particularly dependent on me or my skills, but it was achieved, and I had a lot of fun doing it.
Now, I’ve been to the core a half dozen times. I’ve dropped Onyxia more than that, and I have more than enough purples to be Happy. Its been a cool experience, and I am looking forward to BWL coming out, though my raiding position seems to be tenuous currently, I hope to straighten it out and get in there on launch. The server is packed pretty often, and we have a lively population that keeps coming back. While it had a bit of a rocky start, it’s stabilized and the choice is good.
Until next time,