Saturday, August 11, 2012

Belt Graduation

It's almost a year since Blizzcon 2011, when we were presented to the first stories of Mists of Pandaria. It all looked great, and it was very fun to watch it all with my Virtual Pass. I'm a raider, and very dedicated to my class, so I was looking at all the quests and zones and squeeing of joy cause of all the new content! I was also very happy about my favourite game still getting new expansions. The monk was presented, and several websites featured it heavily. As an illustration they would show a bold shirtless human monk from Diablo, or a male (or eventually female) pandaren monk. I thought something in the lines of "cool that they're adding new stuff. I hope someone in my raid team will play one, cause they will probably be overpowered at start. But I don't really think this monk is for me".



I got access to the beta around May, and leveled a pandaren monk from 1 to 10. I was absolutely in awe with all the beautiful surroundings; especially the trees. The quest chain was good and harmonic in beautiful surroundings, and coming to Stormwind again was a bit of a downer... I really liked Roll. :) Other than that I didn't pay much attention to it all. I logged my main, and had her ride through Jade Forest and Valley of the Four Winds, before I decided I didn't want to get more spoilt.


A couple of days ago, I decided to log back in and make a level 85 premade monk. She's draenei, with pulled-back hair (for Roll of course) and pandaren-inspired happy-face and round horns (pointy horns are very unpandaren in my mind). I set up her talents as a Brewmaster (tank), bought all the glyphs from Flaskataur and hit the training dummy. Good explanation in the spellbook helped me set up a sort of rotation; smash the keg, do a round kick, drink something, breath fire. It was fun. :) And the animations and sounds were really cool. I went to Crucible of Carnage to test my strength, and easily did 2 or 3 of those quests by myself, without even knowing all my keybindings yet. I finally "wiped" on the gilnean boss, and decided to do my last exploration for the day; Zen Pilgrimage.

The spell took me to a monk sanctuary in Kun-Lai Summit. I wanna cover the quests I found there in more detail later, but the short version is that I started a belt graduation. First I got my yellow belt, then my green belt, my red belt and finally my brown belt. I imagine at level 90 I will get a black belt.* :) Both suddenly and slowly a strange feeling started to develop. I've been "here" before! I turned the camera around, and noticed the monks all around me doing Patterns or Sparring each other, respectfully bowing to each other before and after a fight. I used to train Marital Arts several years ago. The only reasons I stopped was a small injury (that I sometimes can feel still, but I smile when I do) and that my belt was getting so high that it was less about having fun, and more about being good or competitive. Seeing all these monks at this beautiful sanctuary in the snowy mountains made me long to train again. And I think this is a class I will spend a lot of time with!

I'm really starting to get excited about Mists of Pandaria!

* I have sadly learned that the level 90 quest doesn't award a black belt after all. :( But! That means I can continue searching for it. :)

45 days to go!

/bow

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