Where We Revel in the Awesomeness!

First I want to say that you guys are OUTSTANDING! I loved hearing about your Realm First achievements and the amazing feats some of you pulled off =) I feel like we went out to the Olympics and a bunch of you came back with Gold Medals. I'm so proud and really happy that the guides were a part of your success.

On top of this, we had some fantastic guild achievements as well. This is really incredible to me because you have a whole group of people working together and coordinating to pull off a really big challenge. Congrats to everyone on their hard work over the last 24 hours!

You guys are a big part of this success. I pushed myself harder this summer than ever before, determined to give you the best possible information. For the first time I leveled professions more than once to catch changes and make tweaks. You asked great questions that got me out there digging for more answers. We debated big issues like the Spirit of Harmony mechanic, faction grinding and the best strategies for Farms. All of these things helped keep me motivated so I was working harder and better. For this I thank you, this is YOUR success and YOUR blog just as much as mine :)

To illustrate this point, here are some stats I pulled off the "Brag" post:

  • I counted at least 145 Realm First achievements from folks reporting back in the Comments
  • We had at least 7 guilds report getting "Working As A Better Team"
  • At least a dozen of you got 3 or more Realm achievements. This is huge!
For those of you who had problems, faced lag or couldn't play Monday night, you were still a part of the story. You asked questions, shared tips and debated strategy with us. All of these things help us figure out a winning plan, so thank you for being a part of this awesome community we've built. You guys are amazing and I'm really proud to be a part of the positive and supportive group of gamers we've built.

Thank you!

Realm First? Brag About It Here!!

This space is reserved for all our readers who want to regale us with stories about their Realm First Achievements and other amazing finds they want to share on Launch Day.

If anyone wants to share tips and tricks in the Comments (especially you EU folks) I'll copy and paste them up here for others to read.

Good Luck to all of you and I look forward to hearing your stories!!

7pm PST: Several EU readers reporting that the realm reset happens 5-10 minutes ahead of midnight. Be prepared and log in early! Also, some problems targeting the quest giver for the trip to Pandaria - macros may be helpful.

9/25 Update:
The Old Boys of Gilneas snagged a Realm First Working as a Better Team achievement! You can visit their site to read more about it. Gratz guys!!

Mists of Pandaria Compendium, the All-In-One List of Guides!

We're just over a day away from the launch of Mists of Pandaria. So it's time to start putting everything together so you guys can jump right in and find exactly what you need for Tuesday! Below you'll find a list of all the profession-related guides I've written in the last two months:

Pandaria Noob Guide - answers basic questions about Pandaria
Zen Herbalism Guide - tips on leveling Herbalism to 600
Zen Mining Guide - tips on leveling Mining to 600
Zen Skinning Guide - kill stuff... skin stuff... done!

Zen Archaeology - tips on leveling to 600
Zen Cooking - tips on leveling Cooking to 600
Zen First Aid - tips on leveling First Aid to 600

Zen Tradeskill Leveling Guides

Zen Alchemy Guide
Zen Blacksmithing Guide
Zen Enchanting Guide
Zen Engineering Guide
Zen Inscription Guide
Zen Jewelcrafting Guide
Zen Leatherworking Guide
Zen Tailoring Guide

For young Pandas who are starting from scratch, our "Classic" Guides:


Noob's Guide to Mists of Pandaria

That's right folks, it's time for the famous Noob Guide! For those who haven't been with us long, during each Beta test I compile a list of tips and facts to help out on launch day. I publish it as a "noob" guide because it typically includes all of the endlessly repeated questions from the chat channels. I also try to include locations for relevant vendors and trainers.

MoP Beta Files: The New Inscription Research

I held off on this post for a while because I know some of you are profiting from the status quo. I've actually seen a bit of commentary out there on the research issue, but very little compared to the debates that have circulated for a long time over this. So before Mists of Pandaria launches, I want to share one of my discoveries about the Scroll of Wisdom recipe.

MoP Gathering: Node data for Gatherer

One of our readers, Neil, has been kind enough to share his Gatherer data with us. He sent me a portion of his Gatherer.lua file from the Beta realm. It seems that he found a way to plug in some data from Wowhead as well (thanks to Wowhead for collecting this type of information!). I added Gatherer to my Beta client and made the necessary edits in my .lua file so I could check this out for you guys.

MoP Engineering: Everything's Better with Explosions!

With the Beta winding down, there's not a whole lot left that needs testing or documenting. I'm still putting finishing touches on my database, but for the most part I'm not turning up new goodies. I did manage to spot one new thing this week that I thought I'd share.

MoP Beta Files: Recent Profession Tidbits

I've come across some interesting bits of information that you guys may or may not have seen. I thought I'd go ahead and repost in case one or two of these slipped past your radar:

I'm sure most of you saw this post regarding the Alchemy Specialization quests. Apparently they won't be fixed until MoP is out:

Alchemists may have noticed that they are currently unable to select a specialization. This is because the specialization quest now requires materials from Mists of Pandaria. While this change was intended to eventually happen, our intentions were not to leave alchemists without the ability to select a specialization prior to the expansion’s release. You should be able to correctly select your specialization as of September 25.

MoP Beta Files: Faction Roundup

Now that Beta is winding down and I've wrapped up my reviews and revisions on the recipes, this is a good time to take a look at the various factions in MoP. There seems to be a distinct change in the accessibility of faction-based recipes that should make life a bit easier in Pandaria.

MoP Beta Files: Leveling Zen Inscription

We've made it to the final chapter! Inscription is our last profession to be leveled on the Beta Realm. I saved this for the end because I have only one shot to test it. That, plus rumors that it was too easy to level, made me feel that it might get some revisions. But we're about a week out from the end of Beta and it's time to wrap up the testing. So here we go :)

MoP Beta Files: Prospecting Trillium

I'm really surprised no one has asked me about this yet, but nonetheless I have endeavored to provide an answer. It's pretty difficult to build up a stash of trillium ore, over the past month I've only managed to get a few stacks of it. Meanwhile I've probably collected over 1000 ghost iron ore. But, I saved what little I found in case I needed it to level professions At this point I haven't used it - so I thought I'd do a bit of testing with prospecting.

I only had 2 stacks of black trillium and one stack of white. They seem to have similar, if not the same, prospecting tables. Here's what came out of them:

3 stacks of trillium ore:

14 uncommon gems (3 purple, 2 yellow, 2 red, 4 orange, 2 blue, 1 green)
13 rare gems (4 purple, 4 yellow, 1 red, 4 orange)
21 sparkling shards (2.1 serpent's eye)

It seems pretty clear from this sample that the drop rate for rare gems is much higher than for ghost iron ore. Unfortunately this isn't a great sample size in terms of statistical analysis, but I hope it's enough to give you number crunchers an idea of what trillium will be like.

Feel free to leave questions/comments below!