My hunter is my main and the toon I most enjoy playing. Heck, she’s the one this blog’s title mostly refers to. However, as I scrolled through my older entries, I realized that I didn’t really post a lot of pictures from when she was leveling and upgrading, like I have been with my other toons. Tons of piccies of alts, but strangely few of the one that I see the most of. Not having early pics is understandable, since I didn’t even think to screencap methodically until halfway through my second toon. But I’ve had a stack of caps from since she was 70 just sitting on my puter, which I had fully intended to get around to organizing and never did. So this is my remedying that in one fell swoop.
The most recent pic of Gal and the first one where she’s decked out in full 80 epics. Finally, whee! Since she’s staying Survival until dual specs come out (because I’m too cheap to pay a respec fee on top of the 1k gold I’ll need to open up the option), Kiisa the kitty is once again her go-to pet. The more things change, the more they stay the same 🙂
Probably one of the earliest pictures I have, she’s even still wearing an old guild tabard from before we moved to Breakaway. This was around the time when the boy and I were Kara-ready but discovered that we had very low chances to actually run with the guild we’d leveled in, despite our having geared ourselves to higher-than-appropriate levels with no help from raid drops whatsoever. I believe she’s wearing her Beast Lord set here, which at the time was pretty necessary for the trap bonus. And that goofy sword is the Khorium Champion, probably her first purple piece ever and a totally inappropriate weapon meant for warriors. She desperately needed hit rating, though, and that trusty old piece of metal supplied a huge chunk of it for months. It also surprised more than a few rogues in PvP — the added strength proved quite effective in smacking down would-be assassins who were expecting me to scream and run back to shooting range. I remember a week of grinding gold for the mats, then running through Shattrath looking for a blacksmith to make it. It still holds a special place in my heart.
Welfare epics in the form of PvP Merciless Gladiator pieces started creeping in. She picked up engineering around that time as well to get the goggles, an investment that she’s still benefiting from to this very day. Headpieces are hard to come by, and any profession that guarantees a endgame-level headgear eight levels before you hit the cap is worth looking into. Trusty old Kiisa, the same cat she’s had since the starting area, looks spry as ever at 70. By the time the picture on the right was taken, she’d transferred over to Breakaway and was picking up some dungeon gear but finding that nothing was really beating some of those PvP pieces. Sadly, the sword was exchanged for a more class-appropriate Zul’Aman fist weapon.
Then Northrend came. The hair went up and a series of crazy coloring mishaps began. She got herself a rhino, Mathilda. And later, a moth named Simon. The armor didn’t really change for most of her leveling experience. She had picked up a Halberd of Desolation from Black Temple before the expansion and would get several levels of good use out of it.
At level 77, the Icier Barbed Spear from the Champion of Anguish questline finally tempted her away from the BT polearm. Wilhelm the devilsaur became her standard dungeon pet around this time as well.
Ah, the magic of dinging 80 for the first time. Only to find yourself in funny-looking blues and realizing that it’s going to take a LOT of instancing to get you back to some semblance of coolness once again. The spear from earlier got sacked in favor of the Whale-Stick Harpoon (aka the fishpoker), a reputation reward from the jolly little Tuskarrs. She also stopped experimenting with hair color and went back to her natural shade.
New shoulders! It’s funny how shoulderpads are one of the least-needed armor items, but have become some of the most obsessed-about. Those previous ones with the scrawny metal feathers were really annoying me. I was very excited when these nicer-looking ones dropped.
While wandering through Zul Drak, I came upon an alternate skin of Kiisa — it was basically the same grey leopard, only with a slightly different posture and glowing red eyes. It was love at first sight. My cat got a facelift.
A few different helmet options ensued. That first one was thoroughly goofy and I dumped it the first chance I got. I rather enjoyed the bronzed, horned mask and wish that it would have been available later on instead of being a stepladder option on the way to epics. Combined with the purple Kirin Tor tabard, it gave the outfit a rather festive jester-like flavor.
The day King Dred’s Helm dropped and I saw what it looked like, I think I facepalmed. My poor hunter looked like she was dipped and rolled around in a mat of mud in this outfit. Sure, she was dual-wielding The Key and Greed, but no number of cool weapons could distract you from the fact that she looked like a half-melted sat-on Hershey’s Kiss. Sigh. If Outland was where the designers first discovered fluorescent colors, Northrend was where they started experimenting with how many ways they could mix those colors together until they became uniformly ugly shades of brown.
An emergency makeover session ensued. Mostly in the form of splurging a couple thousand gold to level my engineering enough so that she could wear the new set of goggles. The epic flyer would have to wait, but at least she had her dignity back. The colorful-yet-muted tones of the Ebon Blade tabard covered up the rest and went well with her hair. The dark neutrals and cool colors pulled everything together well, though definitely in a much more somber way than the previous endgame. Very befitting of Northrend. The high neck of the chestpiece ended up working to an advantage, making the pulled-back hair look fashionable. This actually ended up being one of my favorite looks.
Picked up a dagger, a two-handed sword and the T7 chestpiece. Can’t honestly remember the names of the weapons because I was changing through them so fast for a while. I remember those shoulders, though, because they would be they would be the last blues I would have for weeks. More on that later.
This particular outfit stayed around for a while, too. In fact, she’s still wearing that Wyrmrest tabard because it’s the only faction she’s not at exalted with yet. After getting the T7 chest, she went back to wearing the Polished Regimental Turtlehauberk because it looked better and the stats worked better with the new survival build she was forced to adopt with the big BM nerf.
And then another momentous occasion indeed. After downing Kel’Thuzad for the first time, the affectionately-named Bumpy Fenderbow (aka Drake-Mounted Crossbow) that she’d been using since her first few levels in Northrend finally got replaced. With a level 213 GUN. My hunter had maybe used a gun once before that, and only for a very short while. Quite a bit of confused auction-housing and crafting occurred before she was able to get the appropriate ammunition and ammunition storage device to make this upgrade usable.
That wasn’t all, though. Ol’ Kel also dropped a Staff of the Plaguehound. Since there were no druids in our group, my hunter ended up taking it for the great stats upgrades, despite that pesky little bit of expertise rating. If only there was an enchant that could change that to crit rating…
Which brings us right up to what happened last night. So like I was saying before, I pretty much had purples in every slot except the shoulders. In fact, I was starting to upgrade to heroic raid purples and still not seeing any shoulders. Due to my horrible roll luck, everybody around me was getting shoulders if nothing else. It was getting rather depressing. Then my computer broke for a week and a half and when I came back, it seemed that everybody was finishing up their tier sets and there I still was, with a pair of blue shoulders from one of the first heroic instances I ever did. Slightly disheartening? Yes. But as luck would have it, I ended up attending our heroic Naxx run last night — I was supposed to be studying instead — and after a series of wipes, a lot of strategizing amongst the priests and tanks, and quite a few trips to repair, we killed heroic Razuvious for the first time. Guess what dropped. Guess who had migrated to the top of the loot ladder during her time spend wallowing in a weeks’ computerless self-pity? Guess who squealed loud enough to break the eardrums of several small animals in the immediate vicinity?
But alas, things still weren’t quite right. The spaulders were bigger than I’d expected and in combination with the ponytail and turtleneck, ended up making my hunter look like a giraffe-necked pinhead. Alterations were in order. Thanks to the hit rating on the new piece, I was able to trade out the turtlenecked hauberk for my T7 piece. Maintaining hit rating and gaining tier bonus, check. A quick trip to the salon was in order, so that the hair could cover up the neck area, and finally, my hunter was presentable once more.
Which brings us up to date! Yay!