I’ve Got Purple Fever, And The Only Prescription Is More Cowbell!

Since hitting level 80 a couple weeks ago, Echoes the Tauren Druid has been methodically working through leftover quests (of which there are a LOT) and half-heartedly running one random daily a day for a couple Emblems of Triumph.  I say “half-heartedly”, because I wasn’t getting any great gear upgrades (spell leather is a MYTH in this game, let me tell you!) and I wanted the emblems only to downgrade them to buy some heirloom gear for my eventual goblin hunter.

I had hit a wall in terms of gear progression that I wasn’t terribly motivated to climb: I couldn’t run heroics because my gear was too poor, but I couldn’t get better gear unless I somehow cracked the heroics barrier.  I knew that eventually my questing through the higher level zones would result in decent enough blues for heroics, but that would be weeks away at best, and two emblems a day wasn’t really going to buy me scads of great gear.  So I resigned myself to the fact that this was as far as I wanted to take Echoes on a casual basis, and that was that.

That was until the past couple days, when a string of events pushed me over the top of the cresting hill between when gear upgrades came slow and when they’d come fast.  I got a nice purple necklace from doing the holiday boss event, and then a few guildies declared that they were going to take my wife and I through a full ICC run.  I netted a really terrific epic robe, while my wife got three purples, and that was enough to propel us up into HeroicsLand.

Level 80 heroics are a completely different ball game from regular instances in WoW, particularly in terms of rewards.  Whereas previously I was only getting 2 triumph emblems a day, now I am getting 4-7 of them per run, with an additional two frost emblems for the first random each day.  Plus, I’ve been wearing championing tabards (a kind of alternative form of XP for dungeon runs that increase your reputation with a faction, which opens up good gear and enchants to purchase), which increased in tiny amounts in regular runs, but is just shooting up to the sky with heroics.

So as a healer, I’m never waiting for heroics, and it’s highly beneficial to chain run them, as I am getting gear upgrades through three different ways per run — through boss loot drops, through emblems, and through reputation-championing.  I’ve gone from no purple gear to four solid pieces within two days, and I’m easily able to purchase a couple more tonight.

I know that this is a short-lived spurt of rapid gear upgrades, and that after a certain point, it will slow down again as any upgrade will be tougher to get and of less overall increase in stats.  But the purple fever’s bitten me, and I look at myself in dismay as I fall into the trap that WoW sets up for end gamers — the all-consuming desire to outfit yourself in epic awesomeness — even as I’m really enjoying my time doing all this.  It feels like I’m achieving a lot quickly, and for what that is, it’s fun.

Ultimately, the only reason that I want better gear is just to hang out with my guild when they do raids and heroics.  I really don’t care about beating raids or downing bosses, mind you — I really don’t — but I like my guildies and I want to be with them when they’re off having a good time.  There’s nothing worse than being a lowbie, plodding upwards in levels, as you see level capped guildmates high fiving each other over the previous night’s run and setting up another event that you can’t participate in.  I mean, they do a lot of fun events that the whole guild can enjoy, but I’ve always seen the greatest benefit of being an end game player as you’re never “too short for this ride” when your friends hop on board.

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10 thoughts on “I’ve Got Purple Fever, And The Only Prescription Is More Cowbell!

  1. CunningB February 12, 2010 / 8:49 am

    *waiting for someone to come in with “epix are too easy to get” comment*

    Think it’s one of the things that I’ve come to enjoy with WoW, if I take a couple of months off the game I know that I’ll be able to get back in and gear up quickly to do any new content released. After all gear is surely just a means to an end and not the stick by which you measure someone eh 😉

    I still have rose tinted goggles for the days when epic’s used to be “epic” but I no longer really matters after all when you think about it people really are just complaining about the colour purple :/

    That and how they no longer get treated like gods for neglecting their real life ^^

  2. pitrelli February 12, 2010 / 8:55 am

    yeah its great if you can get a foot up by your guild. I was in the lucky position that I was fully decked out in i200 level on my ‘main’ when I left so I walked straight into most heroics on my return.

    I have to say however most of my emblems go on Bind on Account items and I’ve been sticking to farming ore to gather a stash of gold rather than do endless amounts of dungeons.

    All in all my WoW time is mainly with the expansion in mind and an onus on what my new toons will be, that and I want my Worgen Rogue to have a Chopper.

  3. Ratshag February 12, 2010 / 9:53 am

    I don’t understands. What heroics barrier? Yes, if yer gear is all from Dragonblight (or Shadowmoon Valley) the DF may not let into queue up, but great googly moogly, man! Just buy some level 78 crafted blues! Spend a bit more and get an entry-level crafted epic or two. Take the loot from normal Halls of Lightning. Take the epic loot from normal ToC! Run some dailies at the Tourney and get an epic weapon. Thinking what you had to wait until yer guildies done carried you through ICC and showered you with free Tier 10s don’t make no sense.

  4. Lukane February 12, 2010 / 10:07 am

    Jealous of that ICC run <.<

    I'm with ya Syp. I just hit 80 around the same time. I've been able to outfit myself in all purples except for 1. However there is a large difference between "starter" purples and the ones needed to raid or do heroics. At least for us DPS'ers. I often find myself on the low end, or bowing out of guild raids because I'm not contributing enough.

    I've found that saving up triumphs is pretty easy, and it only costs 40-50 for the conquest gear. That set can pretty much get you where you need to go to start off with. Go see the vendor at the tournement grounds. Just my two cents.

  5. Argon February 12, 2010 / 11:33 am

    I think the best thing for a new 80 to do is to run regular ToC over and over again. This will net you really good ilevel 200 epics. That will net you the most “gear improvement per time”, assuming the queues are reasonable. And once you get into a decent group, you can see if people just want to run it again, so you avoid waiting.

  6. toxic February 12, 2010 / 12:50 pm

    Cunning, you can get epics from normal instances now.

    Yeah, there’s no truth to the “too easy to get” line.

    But seriously, just get in there as dps, be competent, and nobody will care if you aren’t too hot dps wise.

  7. Jomu February 12, 2010 / 1:48 pm

    maybe your guild could have achievement (tome)unlock nights; like how I used to have them in WAR; to be able to do stuff together? i dunno 🙂

  8. Utakata February 12, 2010 / 3:28 pm

    A couple of things I want to mention:

    First, never be afraid to run heroics after you hit 80. This is not The Burning Crusade where you had to be well geared and attuned to do Heroics. There are even some Heroics in Wrath that are designed to gear up the n00b’est 80. But I will recommend going with players you know on your first runs to get used to them at best, and not have Recount rubbed in your face by ignorant puggers at worst.

    Second, there are plenty of craft’able items that you can make and/or aquire that can give you level entry status for doing Heroics.

    By those processes above, you could find yourself easily cover’d in blues and epics very shortly after hitting 80. And the with the latter, cover’d in blues and epics before you even hit Heroics.

  9. Tarisai February 15, 2010 / 9:25 am

    Syp! Nooooooooooooooooooooo!

    Give us an update when you’ve attained all the purples you want and tell us exactly how you feel.

    I think “There is now a horrible void where enthusiasm and humour once lay” will be pretty accurate. Anyone give me good odds?

    😛

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