Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Enter the Gnome

Like everyone else in WoW, I have this slight resentment over the gnomes in general. They are too peppy, too tech and too... small for comfort. Somehow they have been the race I have not felt belonging in the world: they are like dwarves in speed or something.

However, as Unnown project went awry, I decided to have another 'new class-race' combination to begin the quest with, and Gnomore was born. The idea is the same, though: Gnomore says no more killing, only healing and mending. This means however, that he isn't complete pacifist in that sense that he supports his own faction, group and party (party on!) and lets them kill. But he doesn't condone the way the other, more known pacifist priest went along: to get others to do the killing for him. Save life were it can be saved, run if it cannot be done shall be all of the law!

Gnomore was born under bad stars, really. Gnome starter area switched to Gnomeregan, and the gnomes in there are radioactive. My first fear was that Unnown's fate would be repeated, and I couldn't escape Gnomeregan! This proved to be a wrong assumption, as I ran out of the confinement and into the open air.

Now think of it: if you don't kill, you don't get experience, loot or new shiny gear out the the quest rewards. I think this is the only way to gimp your character in WoW in any way! The first quest was to kill 6 radioactive gnomes: like hell I wasn't going to!

Anyhow, the plan was to get herbalism and mining to Gnomore as soon as possible, but there was only one but. Money. Gnomore couldn't get any money at all because the only quests available are killing quests! The first errand boy quest opened at lv2, which was a long way due at that point. So off I went and ran around Khanaros, all the way to Ironforge to get enough exploratory experience. This trip included a short visit to Stormwind and Elwyn Forest to do the similar errand quest as he did after returning to Gnomeregan: I had forgotten to set my hearthstone to IF, so I missed a bit... After completing the quest in Dun Morogh I got enough to start herbalism and I found this beauty:
Poor maintenance of the roads...
Oh, yes, a herbalism node in the middle of the road. In fact, that is not the only one around the area, as it seems that the nodes are where they have always been, the roads have just been painted over them...

Anyhow, the view I got to enjoy time and again in my greed to get as many flowers picked as possible was this:
The Valley.
View from the Spirit Healer at the Ironforge gate. Lovely, but starts to bore you pretty soon.

Gnomore gathered his bags and started running here and there in Dun Morogh to get enough experience and herbs to make some money. Sad part of this is that he cannot run to the dwarves starter area due to the lv4 troggs inhabiting the tunnel leading there, so that part of the 'known world' is off limits. But on the other hand, the other way is open:

To the Wetlands it is! More scary than anything, more dangerous than expected. Even Loch Modan felt like a blissful paradise compared to the scare of the Wetlands.

After reaching Menethil Harbor, Gnomore reached level 5 and got a new skill to his action bars: Power Word: Shield! Now he can go and pick herbs where ever he wants to! So off to Elwyn Forest it is, where the herbs and ore are plenty!

To be honest, I found it amazing that it truly was this way: the nodes replenish faster in Elwyn than in Dun Morogh, or are not picked as often, as I got my bags filled faster than in the home areas. I also got two interesting quests done: surveying the mines, other of which I did as a suicide mission. I just popped the shield on and ran into the Jasperlode Mine, completing the quest with about 15-20 kobolds on my heels!

I decided to stretch the fun in the end, and ran into the Westfall region. Another nice pop-culture reference was rubbed on my face as I entered the area:

There you can also see my UI and all: level6, only Flash Heal and Shield in my action bars. This counters my urge even to kill critters, which I have been so keen on doing with my other toons.

Gnomore rests now in Westfall and will continue from there with more pictures, I promise.

Conclusion from the pacifistic start
If you trek outside the beaten path of quests and fast levelling, you are really on your own. Not killing is no viable option for the fast leveller, and I'm not going to do any speedo thingies in here: I had the option to ask for my brother to come with his alt to help me, but I refrained to doing the levelling the hard way.

I made one amendment to myself: I sent some money to the poor priest to get mining, mining bag and a herb bag to help in the crafts. I will also enter LFD healing as soon as that becomes possible, meaning that the levelling speed will increase at lv15 onwards, and capped at lv20 with mount and Archeology.

I commented the project to Azariell last evening, that I don't remember been so exited about WoW since I started playing it. The thrill of staying alive is there again, to get that one herb/ore before the mob notices you is really exhilariating, and all the time you are on your toes. For some reason I thank myself for not starting this on PvP server...

It is slow, very slow, to level up without quest rewards and accompanying kills. It took me about three hours played time to get to lv6.5, granted though that I levelled my fishing and cooking at the same time. Still, the picking and mining is a way to speed up the levelling for normal toons, and that's why it works for me.

Gnomore will go on exploring the safer parts of the world, finding new flypoints and making connections. For some reason I find it sad that I didn't start him on a RP server, though, but then again, on a normal server he's even more of a curiosity than anything else.

I liked this starter. We'll see how it proceeds!

C out

PS. The Pacifist Gnome pictures will be in this location from now on.