This month, the WoW train slowed down but hasn’t quite yet rolled into station. The engines are cooled, with the pressure lowering. No more is there an insane drive to spend every moment available for gaming in WoW.

But for all that- and despite the lack of progress posts, I’ve still done a fair bit! My Paladin alt-project is level 60 and geared out enough to do low Mythic+ keys. Also, I’ve settled on a spec for him: Holy. Helped to no end by securing the Holy Shock legendary memory. A fact which, combined with the recent change to allow alts to go into Torghast at whatever levels your mains have unlocked, helped imbue a short burst of motivation to spend time on the alt.

In main-land, our guild completed 10/10 normal and has started as of last week into heroic difficulty raiding, with 2/10 on the first night of attempts. We ran out of time to finish Hungering Devourer but he should fall pretty quickly tonight. Then onto Sun King. I don’t relish the thought of trying Dark Lady Inerva just yet on heroic. :P

Outside of this though?

Definitely entering that familiar feeling of being ‘done’ with WoW outside of raiding. I’m having a lot of fun pottering around in Dragon Age: Inquisition and Black Desert Online in my down time. After we get the guild the ‘Ahead of the Curve’ achievement, we’ll have to see whether I continue on with Shadowlands at all or not.

I’d like to think I’d be back to raiding for the future tiers this expansion given my early excitement, but I’m less sure of that now. Certainly the regular pattern from here would be to drift from the game from post-AotC until shortly before the next xpac releases. ;)

That aside! I’m also going to start something new with these journals. Well- new to me at least. The idea came from Wilhelm initially. In his Month in Review posts, one of the things he does is to run through the happenings of prior years, lifted from the posts of his blog.

Wilhelm is able to run an impressively long span of time, given the longevity of his blogging efforts. I still can’t claim that yet, but I think there is enough history to at least make a start. Much of my personal motivation for blogging I’ve discovered is to have this place act as a journal for myself (albeit an open and shared one!) so ever since seeing Wilhelm’s format way back when, I’ve dreamed of being able to do this.

So!

Here we go…

One Year Ago

  • Battlestate Games — developers of Escape From Tarkov — came under fire for stating that they couldn’t add female character models to their game because resources… Oh- and also that it would be against the ‘lore’ of their game. This sparked a conversation on representation in games more generally in the community.
  • I made a rather ferocious return to Monster Hunter World, by power of the Iceborne expansion releasing on PC. I recognised as part of this return that I, like Belghast, had given up on finding a ‘forever game’. But! That every so often, like then with MHW, I came across an all-the-time game.
  • As is generally the way, my return to MHW burned hot and bright, but also fast. I wrapped up the month returning to ESO to finally do some of the Elsweyr content I’d bought much earlier.

I could do a ‘two years ago’ section too, but that is just jumping back to the creation of the blog! So I think I’ll let that be for now, and jump back into your regularly scheduled Goals section. :)

Gaming Goals

January’s Goals

  • WoW: Upgrade at least one legendary to ilvl 210
    I might be able to push to 225, but probably not if I do end up crafting myself a Fevered Incantation as well. So I won’t push for more than 210 just yet. Perhaps 225 can be a stretch goal. ;)
  • Blog: At least one non-WoW post made for the month.
    I’m beginning to settle the WoW playtime down somewhat I think, returning to a slightly more normal rhythm with the initial frenetic rush falling away. So, time to get something other than WoW up! (At least once!)

Ooh, gottem both!

I got a couple of legendary items to 210 or higher actually. Both fire. Fevered Incantation I have actually maxed out at the full 235 ilvl. Firestorm I took up to 210 before decided to focus instead on Fevered Incantation now. But if they continue buffing Frost- well; I might just be tempted back across the aisle and into leveling up the (currently) 190 Frost legendaries and taking them for another spin. :)

In terms of the blog… I’d actually forgotten I’d even set myself this goal!

But I covered it anyway.

I went back and revisited some games from my past of varying ages, and found something to quite enjoy going forward in two of the three at least, Dragon Age: Inquisition and Black Desert Online: Yes. Anthem: No. Still not yet. With no updates in near on a year, hopes and dreams continue to rest on Anthem Next/2.0.

February’s Goals

Hrm… The two goals I’m thinking of here might be a fair bit of a push to achieve. But I’ve been letting myself off easy for the last few rounds, so let’s see how this goes!

If it winds up to be too much of an ask, well, at least I’ll then know!

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition — Complete the main story of the base game.
    Which is to say, I needn’t necessarily have completed the DLC chapters. Although if I can — all the better!
  • Black Desert Online: Reach level 51+ on new Seasonal Character
    I started a Musa, one of the many, many classes new to me. It’s still possible I’ll reroll it to something else, or even return to my original Ranger. If I take that latter route, then my goal instead shall be to reach level 56, and unlock my Ranger’s awakening weapon and skill set. (As she is already 51.)

Games Played in January 2021

RankGameHours% Gaming Time
1World of Warcraft (Retail)107.070.7%
2Monster Hunter: World13.99.2%
3Dragon Age: Inquisition6.94.6%
4Path of Exile6.84.5%
5Black Desert Online6.84.5%
6GemCraft Frostborn Wrath5.03.3%
7Batman: The Telltale Series (Season 2)3.02.0%
8Darksiders 31.91.3%
Links are to posts about the game in question which were made this month — where multiple posts were made this month about a game; may link to the category instead.

Another pretty heavy gaming month! Second only, in fact, to last month with 151.3 hours of gaming. A solid 2/3rds of which was WoW despite the waning interest.

Monster Hunter World didn’t end up burning as brightly as last year’s visit but it was sort of an oddly timed return with Monster Hunter Rise essentially around the corner. Although I’m on the fence as to whether I’ll grab that for switch or not. Initially I was hyped enough to ‘definitely’ be in for it… But then I tried the demo and while I enjoyed the game I did not enjoy the Switch controls. Not even with the Pro controller.

Soooo, I might end up going back to crossing my fingers and hoping for a PC release not too far down the track.

Perhaps the biggest surprise in this list — even to me! — was returning to Telltale’s Batman Season 2. I last played that through to the end of Season 1 sometime in 2019. I made a post shortly after finishing the first episode, and I went on from there to complete the whole first season and the first episode of season 2.

I’ve now gone through and finished Episode 2 and a bit over half of Episode 3. It’s been a bit amusing getting back into it and trying to remember what decisions I made last time around to get me where I am now. ;)

The Blog

13 posts published this month (including this one). Not a bad count for me given recent history, actually. It’s +7 over last month, so I think I found a slightly better balance between time spent gaming and time spent writing about it.

Overall, 366 published posts. The next major milestone of 500 posts is therefore quite a ways off, in fact I’ll only hit it this year if I participate in at least one ‘post every day’ style event. It’s unlikely I’ll get the average up high enough otherwise!

Most Viewed Posts

  1. Deep Rock Galactic: The Solo Experience
  2. WoW Shadowlands: Changing Your Covenant
  3. Considering a Covenant Switch
  4. Damnit… RMA Required on my RTX 3080
  5. Transport Fever: Things I Wish I Knew When I Started

The new additions here are the covenant switch posts for WoW. There has been a growing interest in them as people start getting the itch to move from one covenant to another. Possibly to experience the other campaigns without the requirement of leveling alts. Possibly to solve a dissatisfaction with their current spec/covenant choice, as was the case for me.

Although… If they continue buffing Frost like they have been (flat 9% earlier, and another flat 3% on top of that now)… Well… I might have to investigate the idea of swapping back again!

Although I’m unsure whether I’d actually switch Covenant again… Not right away at least. First steps would be to level up the legendary items again, flip the conduits back to the frost appropriate options and just… see. If it’s competitive, well… Then perhaps a covenant reversion might be on the cards. At least then I can write up the experience of returning to a prior covenant! ;)