Saturday, December 30, 2023

2023 Year In Review

My wife and I managed to get a few days away on a cruise this week, so I initially thought this post would probably wait until 2024, but I find myself with a bit of time in the evening, so I figured I'd at least get started on it.

The early part of 2023 started with me splitting time between playing World of Warcraft Dragonflight and still working through Final Fantasy XIV, with time reasonably evenly split in the first few months of the year.  

By March, after getting 6 characters to max level in Dragonflight and working through more renown, I got tired of that again, so I returned to FFXIV and even started picking up some Elder Scrolls Online.  In ESO, the main goal was finishing up Caldwell's gold, which I did by the end of the month.  

In April, I decided it would be fun to knock out a Skyscale in Guild Wars 2, so I also jumped back into that game.  All during this time in ESO and GW2, I was still working on leveling more jobs to max level in FFXIV.  

In May, I started working on World Completion on my main in GW2 and also started working on leveling a character of every class.  I got the World Completion done in June.  I also began working on the new ESO content, Necrom, when it came out and continued with the FFXIV leveling.

In July, I finished leveling every class in Guild Wars 2 to max and unlocking at least one Elite spec on all of them.  Meanwhile, I was down to just 3 jobs to go in FFXIV to have them all maxed out.  

August brought the launch of the new Guild Wars 2 expansion, which took quite a bit of my time as I ran through that content on two of my classes.   By mid-September, though, I ran out of steam again on Guild Wars 2, so I switched back to Final Fantasy XIV for the final push on those last few jobs.  I finally managed to get the Omni-90 done in FFXVI and so switched back to playing World of Warcraft.  

November and December saw me returning to my Island Sanctuary in FFXIV to get caught up on leveling that, continuing to work on leveling alts in World of Warcraft, and trying to knock out those last few Renowns.  

Next week, I'll try to pull together a preview of what's planned for 2024.  



Wednesday, December 13, 2023

Thoughts on Amirdrassil LFR and WoW Leveling Update

I managed to run through the last two wings of LFR earlier this week, including the final wing with Tindal and Fyrakk.  As a casual LFR hero, I must say that I'm much happier with this LFR installment than I have been in a long time.  These fights are challenging without being overwhelming.  Fyrakk is the first end-of-expansion boss in a long time where I've come out of the fight NOT saying "I will never do this fight ever again."  For me, LFR should be about getting to see the content and potentially getting some rewards that are basically on par with what you can get from World Quests and other events.  I think they've hit that balance nicely with this last raid.  The fights are challenging and interesting.  You have to understand the mechanics and adapt, so it's not just a face roll, but it's not so difficult that you'll be pounding your head against a wall for hours waiting for 10 stacks of determination.

I did have one odd thing happen this week.  I had a tier piece drop for me, and I had another warlock in the group absolutely beg me for it, saying it was the last one he needed for this 4-piece set bonus.  

I happily gave it to him because I already had 445 gloves in that spot (just a purchase from the Dream Wardens), and I hadn't been to the Catalyst yet to switch the last two pieces to tier pieces.  Is it possible that there are folks out there doing raids and such who aren't aware that you can use the Catalyst to convert any gear to a tier piece?  /shrug

Anyway, this person was thrilled to death that I gave them the tier piece, even though it was way less of a big deal than they probably thought.  So glad I could make someone's day.

Also, the final series of campaign and post-Fyrakk kill quests are beyond sappy (tree pun fully intended).  So ensure you're prepared for overdone attempts to tug at your heartstrings. 

Beyond that, I'm still doing Niffem and Dream Warden world quests on Joar for rep until I get those maxed out.

In leveling news, I did get my Demon Hunter to level 70 using the Timewalking event and anniversary bonuses, and I'm now working on Shadow Priest, who is currently at 69.  After that, I'll be working on the Rogue.  I've always hated leveling rogues since they got rid of the Combat spec, so this will probably be another one where I just try to chain-run dungeons to get it over with.

In Final Fantasy XIV, I've primarily been working on my Island Sanctuary, which is now at level 17.  I unlocked the final area of the cave, got a new set of tools to use in said cave, and also upgraded my Cozy Cabin to something large and ridiculous-looking, which I think is the final upgrade.

I had no activity at all in Guild Wars 2 or ESO this week.



Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Using the Anniversary Event and Timewalking Dungeons to Level Alts

 As was true with my last update, I'm spending most of my time right now on World of Warcraft, using both the anniversary event XP bonus and the current week of timewalking dungeons to go back and level a few alts that I had sitting at level 50 that never got touched after the end of Battle for Azeroth.  I've used this to get my rogue, monk, and mage to level 60.  I also plan to use the last few days of the event to finish getting my demon hunter and priest to 70.  For those, I'll obviously be using regular dungeons, not the timewalking variety.  After that, I will return to doing normal stuff on my main with off-time focused on leveling the alts again.  

At the end of Battle for Azeroth, I had 43 max-level characters, including one that was a boost with the pre-purchase of Shadowlands.  I only leveled three characters to max in Shadowlands initially before my 18-month-long departure from WoW.  I did three more when I came back near the very end of the expansion.  Currently, I have six max-level characters: 2 that are sitting between 60 and 70 and three that have now been leveled to 60.  That leaves me with 34 level 50s and a level 60 and level 70 boost.

I won't level at anywhere near that pace again, but I may see what progress I can make.  Mainly, if things come around again, offering decent bonuses.


On the FFXIV front, I'm primarily working on my Island Sanctuary.  I've gotten it to level 16 now.  I don't know what level 16 triggered, but by the time I looked up from doing the latest installment of the Tataru questline and opening the new cave section, I was already halfway to level 17.  So that won't be long.  

Dawntrail Progress

Since last week's update, I finished the MSQ for Dawntrail and have unlocked all of the expert dungeons so I can start running expert ro...