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Dotonbori in Osaka

It’s been a little while since the last update so here’s what’s been going on lately in WoW and life for me.

The Big Trip To West Japan:

Over the Christmas break I took a trip to west Japan just like I did last year. We bought something called the Seishun Juhachi Kippu which I highly recommend. Basically it’s a ticket to ride the slow local trains all you want for five non-consecutive days, and it’s only about $100 which is great. We went to Nagoya, Osaka, Kobe, and Kyoto and spent about a week traveling. It was great fun and certainly something that I’ll remember for the rest of my life, however if it didn’t pan out I think I would have been pretty happy just to sit at home and play WoW for a week and relax.

Some of the stories from the trip are a little too wild to blog about, but let’s just say that a good time was had by all. Some highlights include crazy times at karaoke, eating miso katsu in Nagoya, and being covered in pigeons in a park.

Now for WoW stuff.

My priest, Truckspank, is now geared to the teeth from emblems and although I enjoy healing heroics a ton, there is now little to no incentive to continue doing so. I even spent about 40 emblems or so to get exalted with the Sons of Hodir for the shoulder enchants. One thing I like about that is that the enchants are BOA so I bought two and sent one off to my mage, Chipdipson. I suppose I could try to keep doing one heroic a day for the emblems of frost seeing as I’m only about 6 days away from getting a new cloak. I suppose I just don’t really care too much about it.

I guess I could convert some emblems down and get more heirloom chest pieces. Maybe I’ll give that a shot. So far most of my heirloom pieces are only from the Wintergrasp shards that drop from the bosses occasionally.

Despite the long wait to queue for dungeons as DPS, I’ve managed to get my mage pretty well geared up which is nice. There is still a lot of room for gear improvement, but in the interest of time management I think I’m just gonna let him sit for awhile. Although he’s a lot of fun to play, I’d have to say that I prefer to plays priests now. It may sound a little strange, but sometimes I feel more pressure to pay attention when I play a DPS classes which may be the result of having an overgeared priest. Usually I can just throw a couple heals out and just chill.

As for WoW in general, one problem that’s happened to me a few times now is instant boredom and overall lack of interest once I feel that my character is “maxed out” with gear. Sure there’s always raiding to do, but I’ve never really had the time to devout to that even on a very casual level. So I decided to level up on my alts and put my two 80s on hold for a little bit until whenever I feel like playing them again.



Lately I solely been playing my druid, Partydoctor, and getting him leveled up. He’s currently at about 38 and specced for healing so I can get into groups faster via the LFD tool. I had initially considered dual speccing him as DPS or a tank but I think I’m going to save the gold for later. I came to this conclusion for two reasons. The first being that queueing as DPS takes forever and the second being that it seems like leather tanking gear rarely drops. I’m also not too fond of the druid’s tanking mechanics. I’ve heard a lot of people complain about not being able to see your gear and the same animations and I think I’d agree with them.

So far healing as a druid is pretty fun, but vastly different from a priest. I think overall I still prefer the priest, but I have hope that druid healing will become more fun as I level up some new skills. I did however have to do a little bit of research to figure out how to maximize my spells. One mistake I made was I was trying to use Healing Touch (the really long cast heal) as a sort of flash heal when the tank was getting pretty low. The long cast time really makes this an almost useless spell so I glyphed for Regrowth and now use that as my spam healing spell. I’m also pretty excited about healing as a tree in level 80 PVP. It’s been quite a while since I’ve done any PVP so that should be fun.

I’ve also been thinking about tanking a lot lately and have decided to try it out on a paladin. I currently have a level 21 human paladin named Varlant that I hate for several reasons. The first reason is that I give all of my characters funny names that are inspired by podcasts. So far some of these include Chipdipson, Truckspank, Partydoctor, and Phillyboyroy. As you can see, the name Varlant really doesn’t mesh with the lighthearted vibe of my other characters. The second reason is the look of humans in game. For whatever reason I recently took a liking to draenai characters so I think I’m going to delete the level 21 and make a new draenai. The draenai racial healing buff can come in handy as well. With a bunch of heirloom gear to go around, I’m sure I can get a new character up to 21 in no time.

One problem however is that I really have no idea how to tank and it seems a little intimidating. I’m trying to read up on some basic strategies on blogs and hopefully it won’t be too bad. I figure that if I learned to heal pretty quickly, there shouldn’t be too much stopping me from learning how to be a badass tank. I’m mainly interested in tanking to get groups faster via LFD and to learn another aspect of the game.

Well that’s gonna do it for this post. Thanks for reading!




I moved to Yokohama, Japan in March of 2008 and it’s been great so far. I was teaching in public schools and had huge summer break in 2008 and it was a blissful 2 months spent in WoW, karaoke bars, and the semi-clean beaches of Fujisawa. Sometimes it’s difficult to remember that I’m in Japan and I should go out and explore, but I’d like to think that I have a pretty sizeable social life despite being a WoW player.

Anyway, while in a small bar in Shibuya, Tokyo about a month ago I was chatting up a group of new friends at the table next to me. It’s something that happens pretty often as a foreigner in Japan. It was pretty loud so I had to raise my voice a bit. When asked what sports I like or play, I responded that I’m not really a fan of sports but rather prefer music and video games, namely World Of Warcraft. At this point a very tall fellow foreigner at the next table stared at me and just said “What?”

I fully expect to hear the litany of the usual things people make fun of WoW for but instead it turns out that he was a Blizzard-enthusiast as well. Although he didn’t play World Of Warcraft exactly, he still was a avid player of Warcraft III. I never got a chance to play it and don’t know much about it but as I understand it it’s quite an old RTS-style game. Anyway, we had a good conversation since he still knew the basics of the various races and lore associated with WoW. As it turns out his hometown is quite close to mine in America and we have the same initials and last name. Pretty damn strange if you ask me. Only in Japan.

There was only one other instance that I have met a fellow WoW player in real life and surprisingly it was also in Japan. While walking around with some friends we were stopped by some fresh off the boat military guys looking for a good bar to go to so we all went together. As it turns out one of them was an avid WoW player, Warlock, and we spent the whole time nerding out about classes, imps, instances, etc. I’m not sure what he’s up to these days but it was great time to have some real life conversation about something that takes up so much of my time, yet all of my friends hate.

Have you had any odd or awesome WoW-related experiences? Let me know in the comment section.


For the faction my character is associated with!


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