The Death of a Gnome Army

This post is overdue. And for that, I apologize.

Sometime in the first week of March, the guild <Punt This> was destroyed. The guild bank was taken, but more importantly, the guild bond which brought the Lillis together was taken away.

At that time, guild leaders needed to log in to the GM character every 30 days or else they would be dethroned, with the rank becoming available to any character of nearby rank. In the case of <Punt This>, with its extremely flat hierarchy, this meant that any of some 125 Lilli characters were eligible for the job. One of the Lillis assumed control, transferred the guild off server, and took the guild bank with them.

I was devastated by this betrayal.

Blizzard confirmed for me that the guild had been transferred, but could not disclose the identity of the thief. I spent those first few days scanning a lot of auction houses, looking for the characteristic +22 Intellect enchant which made up the bulk of the <Punt This> guild bank. But nothing came up.

February had already been a tough month for me with WoW; I was barely logging in at all to any of my characters, let alone my Lilli. Many of my friends had stopped playing, and Amicus Fidelis – the host guild on Durotan – was going on a raiding hiatus. I offer this not as an excuse, but as an explanation for why the dethroning happened.

But I can’t explain why a Lilli would sell out other people’s enjoyment for a few thousand gold.

I don’t think I’ve every laughed harder at people’s antics in a video game than I did with the Lillis. These little pint-sized clones brought a lot of joy into a game that doesn’t always have it. They – you – brought a dose of silliness and mayhem and a spark of life to WoW.

That someone saw fit to snap the bonds which brought people together to have fun – silly, zany, madcap fun – really upset me. Perhaps I should have known better and trusted less, limited invites, vetted applicants, asked for blood samples to power the Clone-o-tron 5000.

But doing so would have been against the point of <Punt This>.

I didn’t want to talk about it at the time, even though I should have. And for that I am sorry. It hurt too much.I can say that now, but I couldn’t say it back then. We’d built a little haven from the grimness of Warcraft and it was ours, and someone took it from us. And worst of all, I let them.

It was my mistake, and I am really, truly, sorry for it.

I wanted to thank all the Lillis for helping to build something ephemeral and wonderful. Everyone pitched in to help, be it gathering mats or helping to write articles or even just leveling a Lilli. It was an amazing time, an amazing thing to witness. Thank you. If someone else wants to pick up this torch and carry it, please – do so. No Lilli is irreplaceable, not even this one.

Special thanks need to be given to Psynister, Fynralyl, and Narci for providing a massive underpinning of support on Durotan for this endeavor, and for Alas the crucial driving force behind <Punt This>.

I’m sorry it ended this way, but I’m glad to have shared these memories with you all.

I, for one, will miss all us crazy white pineapple-haired gnomes.

 

Good night, Lilli.

Darkmoon Faire Heirlooms

As I’m sure you’re aware by now, the new Darkmoon Faire is in town for the week.

The Darkmoon Faire offers all kinds of fun little games to play, achievements to…achieve, and quests to complete. And of course, it brings along the focus of this entire expansion – yet another grind.

This grind doesn’t get you any end game gear though. Instead if provides a nice collection of pets (6), mounts (2), toys, PvE heirlooms, and gear from the past for all your transmogrification needs. Basically, this is Cataclysm’s version of the Argent Tournament. The major difference is that the DMF is only around on the first week of every month, starting on the first Sunday of the month.

The purpose of this particular post is farming for those heirlooms. Why? Because heirlooms are kinda “my thang”. You feel me? You know what I’m sayin’? You smell what I’m stepping in? Alright, let’s get to it then.

At the end of the article I have a summary of how many tickets it’s possible for you to farm so that you know what kind of schedule you’re looking at regardless of what items you’re farming for.

Minimum Requirements
I wanted to include this in the guide with the F2P community and the Gnome Clones in mind, though I’m sure some of you other players might like the heads up as well.

The regular daily quests are reportedly able to be done by a character of any level. I’ve heard people say you have to be level 10, other say there’s no level requirement. We have confirmed that you can start the DMF daily quests at level 1. You need to be level 6 to accept the quest that sends you there, but that quest has nothing to do with getting in or doing anything.

In order to do the professions quests, which can be done only once per Faire, you have to be the minimum level to have the profession (which is 1 for non-crafting professions, 5 for crafting). You also have to have a skill rank of 75 in order to open the quests.

For the Darkmoon Artifacts to drop for you in dungeons and battlegrounds you have to be at least level 15. Dungeon artifacts drop primarily from the final bosses in the dungeons though some are able to drop from others. The first artifact that I got was on the second boss in one of the new heroics, and all of the others have come from final bosses so far. Battleground artifacts come from the corpses of your opponents, so make sure you’re looting those insignia. Also, dungeon artifacts come up in the Need/Greed rolls while for battlegrounds to the looter go the spoils.

Archeology is the exception to the professions rule since it has a level requirement of 20. It also requires to you have a skill level of 75 and the quest itself requires you to have 15 Fossil Fragments to complete the quest. So not only do you have to have this profession, you also have to have spent the time leveling it and collecting specific fragments in order to do the quest.

So the minimum level I would suggest for seriously farming the Prize Tickets is level 15 since you have access to almost everything. Level 20 opens up one more monthly professions quest (Archeology) and then you’ve got access to all but the two artifacts that require you to be level 85. However, you can start this farming at level 1, so there’s no reason to wait if you have a fresh toon and the faire is in progress.

Through further research I have found that the A Treatise on Strategy artifact requires level 85 and so far all reports show that it drops only from level 85 Heroics, and typically from bosses whose names reveal them to be somehow related to a military calling such as Commander Ulthok, General Umbriss, and Admiral Ripsnarl.

Also, the artifact called Soothsayer’s Runes requires level 85 as well and is confirmed to drop in Tier 11+ raids. This one is unique then in two ways. First, that it’s the only one dropped in a raid rather than a dungeon. Second, that this one does not require a loot roll; instead, everyone in the raid who has a copy of the Darkmoon Adventurer’s Guide in their inventory will receive it when it drops and is looted.

Heirloom Prices
Before we get into how you go about farming these things, it’s important to know how much farming you’ll have to do.

Of the 25 PvE heirlooms that you can get from the Darkmoon Faire, 19 of them (chests, shoulders, one-handed weapons) require 110 Prize Tickets, the two trinkets both require 130 Tickets, and the two-handed weapons require 160 Tickets.

You cannot get heirloom cloaks or helms from the Faire, and no new item slots were opened in this patch so legs and rings are still unavailable all together (save the ring from the Kalu’ak tournament).

The good news is, these prize tickets aren’t that hard to get your hands on. The bad news is, the event is only around for the first week of every month which means you have a set window in which to do all of your grinding and your grinding potential is limited by the small number of available quests.

Questing for Tickets

Daily Quests: 40 Tickets per Faire
Questing is your main source of tickets. There are five daily quests that you can do, and each of those rewards a single ticket. You can do those daily quests eight times throughout the week, for a total weekly farm of 40 Prize Tickets. How do you do daily quests for eight days in a seven day week? You log on at 12 A.M. server time on Saturday night and do the dailies before 3 A.M. server time on Sunday morning when daily quests are reset. There’s your weekly exploit report, now back to our regularly scheduled farming guide. So 1 ticket per quest, 5 quests per day, 7(+1) days per week.

Blizzard quotes this as being available only seven times per week, but unless they put something in place to stop it, you can still farm an extra day’s worth of dailies during that three hour stretch each time it opens.

Monthly Quests:
Each month, once per Faire, you can do a quest related to each of your professions and secondary skills as long as you have at least skill rank 75 in that profession. Each character can have a total of six of these (two professions, four secondary skills) at one time. Professions reward 4 Tickets each while Secondary Skills reward 3 Tickets each.

For most players that’s going to be the final count on this type of farming. However, if you’re all kinds of serious about farming these heirlooms you can actually (ab)use the system here by leveling your primary professions to 75, doing their quests, dropping the professions, picking up 2 new professions, leveling to 75, doing the quests, drop the professions, rinse and repeat for all eleven professions. So crazy people can get a total of 3 tickets per quest, for all 11 professions and all 4 secondary skills, for a total of 45 prize tickets per month.

Other monthly quests include the Test Your Strength quest which has you collect 250 Grisly Trophies from targets you kill, and quests that start from all of the Darkmoon Artifacts that you get from dungeon bosses and looting insignia from opposing forces in battlegrounds.

[Update: Blizzard has confirmed that all of these are repeatable each month.]

There are a total of nine Darkmoon Artifacts: five from dungeons, three from battlegrounds, and 1 from T11+ raids. Each of these artifacts starts a quest which is simply turning the item in at the Faire.

4 Dungeon Artifacts – 10 Tickets each (40)
1 Heroic Artifact – 15 Tickets
1 Raid Artifact – 10 Tickets
3 BG Artifacts – 5 Tickets each (15)
2 Primary Professions – 4 Tickets each (8*)
4 Secondary Professions – 3 Tickets each (12)
1 Test Your Strength – 10 Tickets

So the grand total for Monthly Quests (not counting the dailies) is: 110*

I’m awaiting confirmation on whether or not Blizzard has put a stop to the dropping/repicking professions thing I mentioned above. If it’s gone, then 110 Monthly is the limit, while if it’s not you can add another 36 to the total.

Total Farming Per Month
This is the part of the guide that’s applicable to everyone who wants to farm the prize tickets, even if you have no interest in heirlooms. These are your total farming caps per month for you to determine how long you’ll have to farm to get all the items you want.

Total Weekly Farming: 40 Tickets
Total Monthly Farming: 18-45 Tickets
Total One-Time Farming: 100 Tickets

So in the first week you’re able to farm a maximum of 158 Tickets if you’re sane, or 185 Tickets if you’re no longer restricted to the realm of sanity.

This works out to roughly 2 heirlooms every two months unless you’re buying expensive ones in which case it will be one on the second month and then one to three more on the third month, and so on.

Lowbie Locked Brackets Currently Bugged

Some of you have no doubt noticed that there is a problem queueing for the level 24 locked bracket since 4.3 was released – queue times are really high and never seem to pop.

This is happening in the locked 19 bracket as well, but eventually those queues are popping. There’s no sign of the 24 bracket popping. Other twinks confirm this on twinkinfo.

This is probably a patch-related bug, though other locked queues (the 70s) aren’t acting this way.

Blizzard is looking into the matter.

Lilli Links!

Lillis have been active on their blogs! Here are some of the great Lilliposts we’ve seen on the Netherweb:

And thanks to everyone who has added us to their blogrolls and joined in the merry gnome fun!

Side note: anyone want to make a Lillipost? :)

Dance, Tall People of Stormwind!

It started as a simple idea: Gnome Clone flash mob dance party in front of the engineering trainer.

The Lillis dropped our important work and converged on Stormwind.

Some of us brought rats. The rats knew how to dance, we don’t discriminate.

At first, our audience was but a single, aloof Draenei shaman, who stoically refused to join in our dancing and the joy it promised.

The call went out over the Netherweb. Dance party. Stormwind. Come, Lilli. Come dance.

More of our sisters joined us. We are 100 strong now, the Lilli army. The Clone-o-tron 5000 steadily churns out copies of the Alpha Lilli. The gnomish destiny is not to be denied.

Continue reading