After hitting level cap in Retail WoW once again, Ula pushed through to complete the introductory story line, at long last and with the assistance of many heals courtesy of Skronk. It was a blur, but I do remember being thrown around a bit, adjusting many giant mirrors, another trip to the horrid Maw, and last but not least, an introductory visit to dreaded Torghast, Tower of the Damned.
Torghast, it turns out, has its own supplemental UI and deals in a new currency, Soul Ash, which apparently is needed to buy supplies to support the pastime of Runecarving. Collecting phantasma there leads to a payout of Amina Powers which are awarded on certain floors of the tower. It’s a lot to take in.
After more violation of personal boundaries and being spit out of Torghast, our efforts finally paid off.
It was time to make the most important decision of Ula’s Shadowlands career. But which Covenant to choose? She specializes as a frost mage who prefers the flexibility to go fire when warranted. She will mostly pursue personal achievements with an occasional regular dungeon, but she wants to preserve the option of participating in a raid or mythic. She has a deep respect for nature as well as admiration of cuteness, but has an aversion to cutesiness and is offput by exaggerated monster baby faces and unnaturally high pitched character voices.
So it came down to which Covenant would be most fun and least annoying to play.
Disclaimer: The following is how my analysis went. It’s not a roadmap nor guide in any conceivable way, as will become apparent.
My first step with almost any WoW consideration these days is to ask “What does Wowhead say?” And Wowhead provides their usual handy charts to assist in Covenant decision making. According to the frost mage chart (actually a table) no Covenant ticks both the Raid and Mythic+ boxes for us.
For fire mages, prospects are a little brighter.
Given that I’m primarily frost and Ula prefers non-violence to violence when it can be avoided, I decided that Necrolord was off the table any way you look at it. As for the remaining three, each has interesting and useful abilities and soulbinds, with Kyrian maybe a little strange because it would call for a slight change in spell rotation and some associated confusion on my part.
With Kyrian, however, each adherent is provided their own owlboi servant, to provide beverages and perform other helpful tasks, and even with another owlboi to semi-tank, with limitations, or so I’m told.
Recently, it’s also been disclosed that Kyrian have access to *this*:
But there’s more . . . Kyrian also have access to this!
At this point, and especially after my previous complaints about Ardenweald and Revendreth, you’d think I was certainly going Kyrian. As of bedtime Wednesday, I announced that I was 90% sure that’s exactly what I’d do. But Skronk suggested sleeping on it and not making the decision until the following evening.
When Thursday came, I started to second guess myself. I was a little hesitant about the whole Kyrian cultist mentality thing, and I hadn’t really enjoyed violently facing my memories all the time whilst there. Moreover, I wasn’t jazzed by the Kyrian mount and outfits, although they’re fine. They’re just not, that great.
Contrast the above with the totally kicking Revendreth threads!
And here’s the Kyrian signature mount.
And there was something else on my mind. I kept hearing that Ardenweald pledges have access to some sort of garden conservatory. This piqued my interest.
It turns out that the Queen’s Conservatory is a “mini-game” which involves planting seeds and catalyzing them with catalysts so that they grow into pods offering various rewards. That still sounds interesting.
Additionally, there are decent mounts in the Fae world, including the signature mount runestag.
On the other hand, Aldenweald is frustrating to navigate, and also I’ve died there many times. Speaking of which, even returning to my body as a spirit is difficult to navigate there. Also, if I selected these Night Fae I’d have to be comfortable spending hours at a time under blue lights and – worse yet – dealing with the annoying cutesiness of various “berry” fae individuals in perpetuity.
So, my decision was not straightforward at all.
At this point, both Wilhelm and Skronk had already made their selections. The pressure was really on.
I knew I had to make a commitment, ready for one or not. And so I decided.
Choosing a covenant is the most important decision your character will make in Shadowlands.Malon, Wowhead
I announced my intention to Tal-Inara in Oribos, collected my achievement, and received my orders.