The Last New Zone (For a While)

I took a brief break from my many alts weekend to play my main for a while. His name is Curb, and he is a gnome.

Mages can be rather frustrating to play. There are small gaps in the spell selections where a mage’s abilities don’t quite measure up to the enemies he fights, and this caused me to drop him for a few months at a time. I took up the spellbook again to grind him a little higher (level 54 now), and to take a visit to the last new zone: Silithus.

I had a bittersweet epiphany while chugging my mechanostrider along the path to the Cenaurian Hold: this is the last new zone for my mage’s last few levels.

It makes me a little sad that this is the last place I haven’t been. One of the joys of World of Warcraft for me has been exploration – delving into the darker corners of Azeroth to see what horrors it holds.

That’s a little bit of an exaggeration, obviously, since some places can be rather beautiful. There is also a lot of empty space, like the mountainous coastline of Aszhara. No matter what, though, there is almost always something to see.

In SIlithus, it’s the bugs. There are tons of them. It rivals Un’Goro Crater for mob density, with giant worms crossing paths with giant scorpions and hulking spiders.

The terrain is nothing very special; the desert theme is Blizzard’s favorite, and it gets a darker, more twisted look here, with floating rocks and twisted outcroppings.

The excitement of finding a new griff point is over, for a while. The joy of seeing a cloud of ripe, yellow exclamation points over NPC heads is over, for a while. I’ve learned every spell by now, and it’s just a matter of increasing their power, for a while.

What’s left for me to do? I could run some instances, but that’s never really been my thing – I enjoyed The Deadmines, and Gnomergan was fun, but my time investment is sporadic at best, and I’d rather my game experience didn’t resemble my work experience too much.

I don’t have a lot of friends on Thunderhorn, my main’s server, because most of them have fled to new games or new realms. I’m the leader of a guild there, The Away Team, but there are exactly two active members. Who would I run them with, anyway?

No, it’s mostly just me and my WoW partner, Feylafell, the Night Elf hunter with the giant axe. She’s a 59 now, and slowly moving from casual player to raid-runner.

Soon enough, it’s just going to be me and my faithful steed, for a while.

I look forward to the expansion for many reasons, but I also hope it brings my old friends back to Thunderhorn. Maybe we can explore the new zones together, for a while.

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