Archive for the ‘Features’ Category

Alazar’s Party Starter-Class Classification


I’ve been pondering the classes of WoW and I’ve come up with some interesting analogies. I was wondering what would happen if each of the classes was bound by the burdens and responsibilities befitting of their lore? What would playing them be like? Here, in summary, is my take.

  • Paladins – You refuse to kill most mobs and bad guys because they’re not pure evil.
  • Priests – No questing on Sunday morning for you! You’re needed at the Chapel of the Light.
  • Hunters – Forget acquiring Phat Lewts, Orgrimmar is starving. Go kill level six Dire Mottled Boars for hours  to feed the masses.
  • Warriors – Rent-a-cops. Your basically hired muscle so you spend your day guarding the auction house.
  • Rogues – You get chased by the rent-a-cops for robbing the local auction house.
  • Druids – Hippies. That’s all I have to say.
  • Shamans – You spend all day filling in the holes you make planting your totems around town, because the rent-a-cop makes you
  • Warlocks – The hell with the world. You spend all day playing Dungeons and Dragons in the basement of the Blue Recluse with your buddies.
  • Death Knights – You kill all of the other classes, because that’s just what you do.

Suffice it to say, I think the Death Knight probably gets the best of the deal.  In any case, I’d love to hear some other thoughts on this. Any takers?

Sights Seen – Mini-Gav and Mushrooms


After a trippy, mind-altering experience in Deepholme, Mini-Gav swears to lay off the mushrooms. Seriously. At least, until tomorrow when dailies reset.

Sights Seen is where you can share your best/most interesting screen caps. Please don’t submit screenshots with the UI, or pictures that have been doctored. If you’d like to submit a screenshot, please send it to our updated Alazar address, HERE.

Alazar’s Party Starter–Looking Back and Leveling

I got thinking this morning about the early-level changes to the classes in patch 4.0.1 and how they would have effected me while I was starting out. I was wondering what I would have done differently, and what would have stayed the same, primarily with my first two toons, Lug and Gavelier.

Thanks to the little icons on the talent trees specifying them as either tank, DPS or healer trees, Gav likely would have chosen retribution or protection for his tree rather then leveling into his early 30s as holy. I thought that I needed all the healing buffs I could get to survive and didn’t understand that increased durability or sound damage-dealing can also help keep my ass  ambulatory. I truly didn’t know what the ret or prot trees did, just that they didn’t give me healing improvements.

The addition of Crusader Strike as a baseline pally power would have sped my leveling up dramatically, and getting Templars Verdict or Hammer of Righteousness at level 10 would have made it even easier. Leveling with auto attacks and the occasional judgment was slow going.

The change for Tauren hunters to start the game with a tallstrider pet wouldn’t have changed Lug’s experience much since his first pet was a tallstrider named Stridy. It may have made the early game a little faster since I would have a pet’s DPS as well as my own, but the big change would have of course been the removal of ammo. Countless times early on I’d be out in the field fighting only to run out of ammunition, at which point I often died. The change to focus wouldn’t have made a big difference then either because well, Lug was my first character and the concepts of rage, energy and mana kinda blended together in my head. It was only after playing rogues and warriors (and later Death Knights) that I would have understood the difference.

It’s going to be interesting to un-mothball some of my low-level toons like Goldfox my lvl 12 gnome rogue,  Priset my lvl. 11 undead shadow priest or Slew my lvl. 14 Draenei Shaman to see if I can re-spark my interest in them. When Cataclysm hits, I’m sure they’ll get some burn.

After Gav hits level 85 that is.

Alazar Party Starter – All About Alazar

Today we’re going to open with an Alazar’s Party Starter, something we haven’t done since late April. I’m going to try and make this a weekly column, but no promises.

Our topic today is about Alazar itself. We’ve undergone quite a transformation in the last three years. We launched back in October of 2008 as a way to get WoW out of my main blog for Since then, Alazar has taken on a life of it’s own. It’s been busy, it’s been quiet, but it’s always been active.  Here are some of my favorite posts over the years.

  • (Oct. 2008) Druids are my Bane – This post covered my struggles doing quests for Night Elf druids. I got on a good rant here. This was my first major post.
  • (Jan. 2009) Outlands or Northrend? The Time is Now, Gavelier – I wrote this post literally as I was standing in Stormwind’s trade district, pondering what I should do. I was excited about going to Northrend but I didn’t want to miss everything in Outlands. Ah, decisions.
  • (Apr. 2009) Gav Assaults Wintergrasp – This began my obsession with Lake Wintergrasp. I’ve been there countless times since, but this is where it started.
  • (Apr. 2009) Gav News and Notes – an inauspicious name, and a calm beginning to the post bely my excitement: I had finally hit level 80. Time to celebrate with a video!
  • (Jul. 2009) Gav’s First 10-Man Dungeon – My first raid! My old guild Savagely Dysfuntional called for all level 80s to come help run Obsidian Sanctum so I came. They actually had to talk me out of going to Wintergrasp instead. It was fun, even if I did get hit by one of the lava waves.
  • (Jul. 2009) Path of the Paladin: Premiere Post – My first attempt at a live blog. I’ll have to do another of these some day.
  • (Jan. 2010) Beta did What?! – Betasim, my counterpoint, is notoriously anti-WoW. However, on one night in January 2010 she gave the game a shot. I still hope that someday she’ll come back to it.
  • (Apr. 2010) Alazar Party Starter – Death by Death Knight –  Finally, my most recent APS. The reason this is so special is that I submitted a modified version to (now WoW Insider) and got it published there. Publicity!

Life of a Hero – Part 3

It’s time for another Life of a Hero. Today I’m showing some minor mile markers from Gav’s 20s.


We pick up Gav’s adventures from my first foray into Duskwood.  The Nightwatch’s warning, the skeleton in the middle of the road… it was nerve wracking. I didn’t find out what it was all about though at the time.


I’ve arrived in the Wetlands! I like the Wetlands for what ever reason, so I’ll be sad to see it changed in Cataclysm.


Other then the addition of the Titan Panel add on, this pic show me back in Duskwood having my first encounter with Stitches.


I totally panicked, but he’s quick for such a massive beast. Of course, even if I didn’t panic, it wouldn’t have helped; I was no match.


And here’s a screen that allot of humans in their 20’s  can relate to. This actual encounter eventually spawned my favorite Gavelier’s World of Warcraft comic ever. I don’t think I’ll ever get back into making the comic again, but it’s still there… waiting…

Sights Seen: Butler of the Peaks


Gav was in Storm Peaks en route to Dun Niffelem, coming from the Argent Tournament grounds and had a surplus of junk to either store or sell. What to do? Why, call your personal butler, of course!

“Hello, Jeeves, would you take this stuff for me? Oh, and what would you give me for a couple stacks of vendor trash? 2 gold? I’ll take it. Good man, Jeeves. I’ll see you around.”

Sights Seen is where you can share your best/most interesting screen caps. Please don’t submit screenshots with the UI, or pictures that have been doctored. If you’d like to submit a screenshot, please send it to our updated Alazar address, HERE.

Alazar’s Party Starter – Death by Death Knight


I’ve been continuing to level Gleave (my Death Knight) in Borean Tundra with help from his Ebon Gryphon. It’s so much easier to level when you can fly! In any case, I was thinking that, of all the classes in WoW, dying by being killed by a Death Knight must be one of the worst deaths in the game. Think about it; you’re sick as hell, there’s often a ghoul  gnawing your limbs off, and the DK themselves is tearing into you with their weapon of choice. Is there a worse class to be killed by? For that matter, what’s the best class to die from? Who gives the most merciful death? I can’t decide, because they’re all pretty violent. Anyone want to volunteer their opinion?

Alazar’s Party Starter

It’s been a while since we’ve had a Party Starter, so here’s a new one. The realms are down as we speak for Tuesday maintenance, and I’m chomping at the bit to get back in. My question is, once the maintenance is over, what do most people do first? I usually do my dailies and maybe run a heroic, but what about everyone else? Do people immediately queue for a battleground, or start a raid for the weekly heroic, so just mill about and talk to folks? I’m curious to hear what others do when they first get in after maintenance.

Life of a Hero – Part Two

Time for the next chapter in Life of a Hero. We pick up as Gavelier leaves Northshire Abbey.



Stormwind! I was awe-struck when I first found Stormwind, and it’s theme music swelled up. I liked Stormwind as my primary business center for my first 60 or so levels, but that eventually changed. You’ll notice I’m going ‘sword and board’ here. I wasn’t sure what I should be fighting with, so I randomly changed between a one-hander with a shield and a two-hander for the longest time.



OMG, I’m underground! lol I was excited to leave the open air and head underground for the first time, even if it was just the Fargodeep Mine. Kobolds were relatively easy prey, except when they ganged up on me, which they did. Allot. And I died. Allot.



Wow, a treasure chest! This was the first treasure chest I ever found. I was in Fargodeep mine (obviously), and when I saw it I ran to it as fast as Gav’s legs would carry him. I don’t remember what was in it now, though.

 2008-03-06_190648 Jumping a ways ahead, I found these Pioneer Trousers of the Monkey in Westfall, and they were the first piece of armor I found with an enchantment on them. Thus, I wore them – not concerned with the fact that they were leather armor, vice mail armor. Nor did I know that  ‘… of the monkey’ isn’t the best pally enchant. I wasn’t too bright, early on.

Alazar’s Party Starter – Battlegrounds Cool Again?

In response to the overwhelming success of the Random Dungeon system, Blizzard is unveiling the Random Battleground system in the forthcoming patch 3.3.3. I’ve only partaken in Isle of Conquest from patch 3.2 and most recently Strand of the Ancients, but I would like to try some of the older ones. My observation however, is that the battlegrounds are – by large – empty There’s not a huge contingent of battleground instances running these days, at least not on my battlegroup. This new Random Battleground system could change that. With the ease of the Random Dungeon setup and streamlined PvP rewards, this could make battlegrounds a big thing like they used to be when they were first introduced. I hope so, and I’m interested in the influx of newcomers to battlegrounds like there were to dungeons. Like with the dungeon system, those newcomers would include the likes of me, so I’m looking forward to seeing if the tolerance that eventually developed among these new-age PUGs shows up in battlegrounds. You had to come to terms that some folks – like, say, me – weren’t experienced dungeon delvers, so the hard-core instance runs of the past are often left at the door for random dungeons and heroics. That makes for a lower-pressure environment, and that makes more people take part. That, to me, is the big bonus of these new systems. More people = more fun in an MMO.

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