New city. New world. New Paladin.
Welcome, welcome! This is Guarded By the Light, and I’m Resonate. (Yes, it’s another Paladin blog named after a Paladin skill or talent. We’re all a bit uncreative as a community, aren’t we?)
You might remember me from a blog I maintained a little while back called Divine Guardian. Around the time Patch 3.3 came out, my Paladin fell into brief disuse as the lure of faction transfers brought me to my old Alliance Mage — the character with which I have by far the most history, and so had grown quite anxious to reunite with. A few months after that, I had become fed up with the prospect of raiding ICC for the next 9 months — I just really dislike the aesthetic of ICC — so I took a break from WoW to focus on other stuff until Cataclysm got nearer. I focused on hanging out with real-life friends, and playing games with them.
A month or two ago, I took a look at Final Fantasy XIV, since I’d been following it since its announcement. While promising, it lacks much of the polish and…well…content that I had expected for a game that had been in development for five years, especially from a company that’s been in the MMO industry for nearly a decade. The skill system and combat are very fun, but too laggy. The game world is enticing, but completely barren, with no NPCs or quests in sight — just some glorified dailies and grinding endlessly on mobs. While I can tolerate a grind (just look at my half-completed Insane in the Membrane on my Mage), I can’t tolerate grinding as the primary focus of a game. Maybe I’ll revisit it someday, but that day will not be soon.
So, with my MMO appetite once again whetted, my old friend WoW called me back in — and, more specifically, my good old reliable Paladin called my name. Nostalgia goggles for my Mage aside, I’ve never had a character in WoW that I’ve loved playing nearly as much as my Paladin, and I’ve been through a ton with her/him: leveling up in The Burning Crusade, her first venture into heroics and Karazhan, dabbling into higher tiers of Outland raids, besting the Scourge in Naxxramas, and tanking a few hard-modes in Ulduar and the Crusaders’ Coliseum. And her transformation from a twiggy Blood Elf female into a more properly-proportioned (if balance-challenged) Blood Elf male.
I’ve played with a few different guilds in my time, transferring to more organized and disciplined guilds on a few unfortunate occasions when our “home” guild’s progression stuttered to a halt and attendance faltered. Even in those guilds, I performed among the best — often being able to teach a few things to even veteran high-level raid tanks — and I had no doubts that I could push myself to that higher standard and raid in a hard-mode guild if I wanted to. But throughout it all, none of those guilds ever really felt like “home.” I’ve always felt myself pulled back to my old friends in our main guild who, despite their slightly slower progression curve, always feel “right” to raid with. There’s no jealousy here, little drama, no elitism, and lots of good cheer. I’ve learned that while high-level progression can be rewarding, it’s a hollow substitute for a real guild with friends that you enjoy playing with. And so, I’m back home again, where I think I belong.
While Divine Guardian focused almost exclusively on theorycraft discussions, guides for new players, and reviews of raid content, I’d like to balance this new blog a little bit more. While all of the aforementioned topics will receive plenty of attention (and more!), I’m also going to cover my personal adventures and what I’m up to in game as well. I thought it appropriate to start fresh with a new blog and a new focus.
So, that’s what I’ve been up to in the past year. A lot’s happened since my last blog entry, and a lot of things are different. As we move forward into Cataclysm, things are only going to become more so. I look forward to making the journey with all of you.