17 March 2011

[Shared Topic] Archaeology: How do I love thee?

This week's shared topic over at Blog Azeroth is brought to us by Amaranth from Specced for Drama, who asks:
What is your favorite profession and why?
I've seen some practical responses which weigh the benefits of primary and secondary professions with regards to a character's role in a raid or instance. That's legitimate, although we already know how I feel about my main's professions. I've also read plenty of posts complaining bitterly about archaeology, and still more admitting a deep love of...fishing. (QUESTION: If you are a lover of fishing, do you find yourself similarly attracted to the lonely grind of archaeology? Alternatively, do you hate one but adore the other? Inquiring minds want to know!)

So if you haven't guessed my favorite profession, it's ARCHAEOLOGY. First, let's explore the categories of professions. You have crafting and gathering, and the curious hybrid Archaeology, which uses the things it gathers to craft other things. The only drawback of Archaeology is that the items you craft are 90% useless, and unfortunately I think that non-raid related items may also be considered useless by a great many raiders. (I, however, love my Argus teleporter) Still, raid-useful professions are practical, but not particularly enjoyable to do. Crafting epic gear just doesn't make me excited to do it over and over every day.

Why is Archaeology so great? Let me count the ways...

1) Gathering. There is a quiet joy in flying/riding around quiet zones in search of nodes. The drive of "Just one more node..." can be addictive; in fact, I've found myself choosing to level archy rather than play a beloved alt, and stayed up past my bedtime because "the next digsite is just right there!" Gathering is so nonintensive that it's good for multi-tasking, or days when you're too sick or tired to deal with anything more involved.

2) Goals. (Golds?) More than just gathering stacks of items, you are gathering pieces of a whole, which can be gear, minipets, mounts, flavor items, or delicious vendor trash. I will acknowledge that the reason I like this aspect is because I don't care about the actual goals, that is, I don't get angry when I don't get Tyrande's Favorite Doll in the queue. I like working towards the goals regardless of what that goal is. [See also: I love senseless achievements.]

3) Convenience. Perhaps not the best word, and I'll be the first to admit that flying back and forth between Winterspring and Silithus is decidedly the opposite of convenient. However, archaeology is a good way to kill time, be it the 20 minutes before raid or the 30 between random dungeon pops.

4) My Inner Diva. Finally I have the perfect excuse to break my coveted tier sets out of the bank! Because I'm a packrat and also love old content, I painstakingly collected all sorts of gear sets from old quests and dungeons. Now, when I settle in for some archaeology, I rush to the bank and get my gear on!! So far I've received both /lol and a gentle /pat for my getup. But I know that everyone who beholds my glory is probably too awed to say anything.

Rocking my Cenarion set

What?! Nine thousand?!


  1. Grats on 9000! My alt druid is my achieve whore character (have 10 tabards and 11 mounts 2 exalted reps so far at lvl 40) and I tried a little archaeolgy on him... then quickly realized siwft flight form is amazing haha

  2. The drive of "Just one more node..." can be addictive; in fact, I've found myself choosing to level archy rather than play a beloved alt, and stayed up past my bedtime because "the next digsite is just right there!"
    Hee hee, I've done all those things, too.

    I love Fishing and Archaeology both (though only enough to do them seriously on one character), and I do think they appeal to me for similar reasons as far as the raw gathering aspect goes. However, Fishing is something I do mainly because the loots are practical and useful, whereas, with the notable exception of TFD, Archaeology is something I do for the fun of discovering the little bits of story and I don't care that most of the stuff is "useless". WTB an Archaeology bag big enough to store ALL of the non-BoA rares, though.

  3. @Tamek: Thanks! My guildies were surprised because I had been away for a few weeks and then suddenly shot up the chart to 9k >_>;;;

    @Kamalia: I would love to have another type of storage for my rares. There are some that I know I won't give up, but things like the "Draenei meet the Naaru" trinket make me think I should sell it just to get some bag space back. But it's a raaaaaare and I maaaaaade it!

  4. I love archeology as well, focusing though on getting toons ready for heroics though. On fishing, what practical loots are there besides fishing hat/pole etc?

    Congrats on 9000 as well...think I have one toon close to 5000...

  5. Wow grats on 9000!

    I've taken a bit of a break from archaeology but it might have been long enough now for me to come back... because the pain from not getting the darned doll has lessened over time. I might pick it back up soon...

  6. @Sarge: The fishing dailies give a (very) few practical items: the hat, poles, and water walking pots (well, I like them anyway). The Northrend daily can drop very valuable vendor trash, but you have to, ya know, go out to Dalaran to do it. :/

    @Keredria: I definitely feel for everyone who is specifically doing Archy for a certain item. Of course, I want to have *all the things* but at least for now I feel like I can approach it leisurely instead of as a chore. Good luck with that blasted doll ><