Wednesday, 4 April 2007

The trouble with Soulshards

Just a few days ago a fellow Witch of Darkshire invited me along to Uldaman. I agreed to accompany the priest as I had been tasked by Advisor Belgrum in Ironforge to find the Tablet of Will deep within the heart of the Uldaman cave system.

I flew to my old stomping ground, Loch Modan and then summoned my Felsteed to carry me into the Badlands. It was then that I checked my bags and realised, with horror, that I only had seven shards on me!

One of the very first things a young Warlock learns is that nothing in this life is free. Many of our more powerful abilities such as summoning our minions, creating Soulstones and healthstones all require, not only mana but also a Soul Shard.

Soul Shards are pretty, purple gems that are created by ripping the soul out of an unsuspecting target at the point of death. I have given a small amount of thought to what losing their soul means for the, now deceased, creatures at my feet and have decided that that will teach them to mess with a Gnome Warlock!

Oh! And one very important thing....Soul Shards can only be acquired by killing an enemy that yields xp.

This is where things got a little bit difficult for me. I couldn't actually find anything in the Badlands that yeilded xp...."Well, I was sure to find something inside the instance that would" I reasoned. And until then, 7 shards would have to do!

Now it's rare that this Warlock makes a mistake, and even rarer that she'll admit to it. But on this particular occaision, and in hindsight, it was a pretty damn funny one! Still flexing my new affliction muscles I was playing around with my various spells and their hotkey positioning. Whilst doing this, I also decided to mixup my Voidwalkers command keys. Well, I was in an instance well below my level, it would be fine if I hit the wrong key wouldn't it? They say that pride goeth before a fall, and indeed this Gnome, despite her small stature, had a long way to fall!

In a moment of pure insanity I swapped my Sacrifice button for my attack button. Well, I would find it quickly, in an emergency, if it was at the front of the list wouldn't I? And then we ran around a corner and into a nest of scorpids!

I dutifully sent my Voidwalker into battle and set about raining fire on the nasty creatures. To my absolute dismay my Voidwalker had been killed by the Scorpids and sent back to the nether realms. So I patiently summoned him back and we set off. As we encountered a bat-like creature I sent him to attack, and he was slain again. What on earth was going on!? Then it hit me, like a bolt from the blue, or a small shimmering shield....which I had been wondering about....I was not sending my faithful minion to battle, I was sending him to his doom.

And now I had just one soul shard left and a party depending on me and no sign of anything that might grant me more shards. What an embarassment I was to my class! A warlock who had wasted her Soul Shards when she had precious few to begin with!?

I summoned my Void walker, using my final Soul Shard and then, woe! My ability to control it disappeared. Disconnecting and reconnecting was the advice I was given to solve the problem, but this would leave me soul shardless and petless and thus pretty useless. What a fool to have gotten myself into this mess! I was too mortified to explain to my waiting party the mistakes I had made that had lead to this show stopping situation. When I had a brain wave. I could set the attack button as a hot key and use that until another solution presented itself.

It was a good while, at least one full wipe, copious use of my imp and a very good lesson learned before I was able to acquire any more Soul Shards.

So, never again will I enter an instance without at least one bag full of Soul Shards! And that, is the trouble with them!

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